Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Chicken Korma

I wanted to cook up some Chicken Tikka Masala, but my local Indian grocery store didn't have a lot of the ingredients I needed, so I decided to do a hodge podge using a korma seasoning packet with the addition of tikka masala style ingredients. It came out friggin delicious. If you think about it, this is basically using my favorite cooking technique the braise - sear, saute, simmer. Any who - highly recommend this next time you're craving some Indian food. Caveat - you can keep it real and make your own curry powder but my Indian buddy swears by Shan's powder mix.

Cooked Basmati Rice
2 pounds chicken thighs, skin removed and bone in
1 Shan Korma Mix (use 3/4 box if you like it less spicy)
1 large onion diced
1 finger of ginger minced (2 tbsp)
3 green chillies minced (less chillies if you want to make it mild)
3 cloves garlic minced
1 small box pearl onions roasted and peeled
1 cup yogurt
3 cups crushed tomatoes
Chicken Fat/Skin (or canola oil)
1/3 cup water

1) Marinate chicken in 2 tbsp of Shan mix. Let sit for at least 30 mins.

2) Sear the chicken over medium high heat with some chicken fat extracted from the chicken (skins will give off a good amount of fat) in a large saute pan. The key is to not touch the chicken in the first 5 mins of cooking so it caramelizes well - a key to making this dish flavorful. Make sure to brown nicely on all sides, then set aside - about 5 more mins.

3) Saute the diced onion, chillies, and ginger in the same pan. Cook for 5 minutes over medium low heat until soft. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant about 30 seconds.

4) Cook the rest of the Shan mix in the same pan with some more chicken fat or canola oil. Cooking spices seems to be a key technique when working with Indian food. This really amps up the flavor a bunch - about 5 minutes.

7) Add tomatoes and scrape up all the brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Let this brown for another 5 minutes - more flavor.

8) Add the chicken, pearl onions, water, and simmer for about 30 minutes covered.

9) Finish with some yogurt and a tsp honey for a creamy texture - stir in to incorporate. Final time to adjust - if you want it creamier add more yogurt. If you want to make it slightly sweeter go Bobby Flay on it add more honey. This is really a killer dish and definitely a go to from now on. It's relatively spicy, so if you can't take the heat reduce the number of chillies and the amount of spice mix you use. Spice mix also has a high sodium content so no need to season at all.

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