24 July 2012

Chicken Curry

This was meant to be somewhat different, but it all came down to what was in the pantry and fridge, rather then what I thought was in there.  It was going to be an authentic Lahori Chicken Curry that I found on Leite’s Culinaria.  It appealed as it made think me of Hilda.  Hilda was the receptionist at the local surgery, where Dad was  a GP, when I was born.  So yes we are going back quite a few years.  Hilda was like an extra Grandmother, all the more exotic having been born in Lahore.  Her father I think was in the Black Watch and she was full of stories.  I used to visit on the way home from school or we would sometimes go out to lunch to the Stirling Arms, one of the local hotels in Dunblane.  It felt most grown up to have lunch in a hotel.

This is a dish for a lazy weekend to simmer all those wonderful spices and let their exotic aromas waft through this house.  It looks like a long list of ingredients, well actually it is a long list of ingredients, but none of them are too hard to find, you may be like me and even have them all on hand in the pantry.  With chicken and potatoes it makes for hearty dinner that won’t leave you wanting.
Chicken Curry
Serves 4
800g chicken thighs
4 medium agria potatoes, peeled and quartered
1/2 tsp turmeric
Pinch chilli flakes
Pinch salt
4 tablespoons canola oil
1-inch piece cinnamon stick
8 green cardamom pods
5 whole cloves
6 black peppercorns
2 whole dried red chiles
1 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp cumin seeds 
1 tbsp garam masala
1 onions, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1-inch piece fresh ginger, minced
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 fresh red chilli, cut in half
1 can crushed tomatoes
1 can coconut milk
1/2 tsp turmeric
Pinch chilli flakes
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Juice of 1 lemon


Place the chicken, potatoes, 1/2 teaspoon of the turmeric, pinch of chilli flakes  and pinch of salt in a large bowl. Mix well to coat the chicken and potatoes with the spices. Set aside while you make the sauce.
Heat the oil in a large frying pan and add the cinnamon stick, cardamom pods, cloves, black peppercorns, red chillies, coriander, and cumin seeds. Cook over a medium high heat just for a moment or two to allow the seeds and spices to release their aromas.
Add the garam masala, onion, garlic, ginger and the red chilli.  Season with salt and fry for about 5 minutes over a medium heat until everything begins to brown.  If it is all browning a little too quickly turn down the heat.
Remove the cinnamon stick and red chilli.  Add the tomato paste and stir to combine with the vegetables and fry for a minute.  Add the can of tomatoes, turmeric, chilli flakes and season with a little pinch of salt.  Stir well and then add the coconut milk.  Stir again and bring to a simmer.  Simmer for a few moments, remove from the heat and then blend with a stick mixer.
Meanwhile heat the rest of the oil in a frying pan and add the chicken and potatoes.  Brown over a medium high heat for 3-5 minutes.  Add the chicken and potatoes to the sauce and return to the heat.  Simmer on low for 30-40 minutes until the chicken and potatoes are cooked through and the sauce has thickened.  Just before serving stir in the lemon juice and coriander.  Serve with steamed rice*
*For perfect rice head over here
Rich, aromatic and just a little spicy.  I would like to try it the original way with yoghurt, however coconut cream does add a wonderful richness.

If you like this you might like this Curried Beef Stew


  1. Yep, I have everything on hand right now except the chicken thighs. Great combination of flavours - perfect for a wintry night.

    1. It is, warming & comforting perfect for this time of year!

  2. Love all these flavors, Mairi! A good curry is so warming and delicious. A lovely tribute to Hilda - you can never have too many Grandmothers!

    1. Thanks Hannah, love how certain dishes remind me of some of the wonderful people that have been in my life :)

  3. Yum, I just cooked a tandoori style chicken tonight with lots of the same flavours, it's so nice cooking all the spices from scratch and letting all the aromas develop!

    1. Love tandoori....hope to see that recipe soon :)


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