I really dislike the C word…
It conjures up images of bright orange, gloopy dishes being served at neon signed restaurants with names such as “The Royal Balti” (which for your kind information, translates as “the royal bucket”).
If it is not already obvious – I am Indian. That being the case, I grew up eating Indian food and lots of it. Lots of different types of dishes, all with unique names, ingredients, flavours and aromas. Consequently, I had absolutely zero notion of the concept of “curry”. I remember an incident in primary school when a friend approached me and said “Monica, you’re Indian. Does that mean you have curry every day for tea?” (For any British readers based south of the Watford Gap, the word “tea” is northern for dinner). The blank expression on my face was my response. Needless to say I went home very confused after school that day and had a good chat with Mum to clarify!
Today’s recipe is one of the few dishes that although has the word “curry” in its name, is nothing like the stereotypical, lifeless, fluorescent aberrations I described earlier! This is the type of dish that made us constantly ask as kids – is it ready yet? How about now? This recipe is just so good. I’m talking lip smacking, forehead-sweating, nose slightly running, hyper ventilating-ly good… you know what I mean!
That’s right, the winner winner chicken dinner that is…Chicken Curry! This specific recipe is a twist on the classic in that it is not as “wet” as the original. Mopped up with hot and fresh chapattis, the drier masala works a treat. Hence the word “sukha” in the dish’s name, which means dry. See what I do? Teach hindi AND share recipes simultaneously…true value here people! I hope you enjoy this dish as much as I do. Post your thoughts below. Oh and pleased to say that the lovely people at Net Flights have featured this recipe in their latest magazine! Even more of a reason to try!
- 1kg chicken thighs & legs, skinnless & on the bone
- 2 potatoes, washed and quartered
- 2 medium onions, chopped roughly
- 2 green chillis
- 3 garlic cloves,
- 3" ginger, washed
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 3” cinnamon stick
- 2 cloves
- 3 peppercorns
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 black cardamom
- 2 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp garam masala
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 3 plum tomatoes & 3 tbsp juice
- handful fresh coriander
- Using a knife, place some slits in the chicken pieces.
- To make the masala, coarsely grind onions in a processor and place in a bowl. Now coarsely grind the chilli, ginger and garlic.
- Heat oil in a non stick pan. Once hot add the cumin alongside the cinnamon, cloves, peppercorns, bay leaf and black cardamom.
- When they begin to sizzle in the oil, add the ground onions. Add 1/2 tsp salt and cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring continuously.
- When they turn slightly translucent, add the ground chilli, ginger and garlic mixture. Cook for 3-4 minutes until the masala turns golden.
- Now reduce the heat and add the remaining salt, garam masala, paprika and turmeric powder and mix well. Now add the plum tomatoes and juice and mash into the masala. When the oil begins to separate from the masala, add the chicken and potatoes and mix together.
- Add 1/4 cup of water and cook on high heat stirring every couple of minutes. After 5 minutes, reduce heat to medium and place lid on pan. Allow chicken to cook for 20 minutes, stirring every 2-3 minutes.
- Cut through a piece chicken to ensure it is white all the way through. Place a knife through the potatoes to make sure they are also fully cooked. Sprinkle on fresh coriander and mix.
- Check for salt and adjust accordingly. If you would like the gravy of dish to be a little "drier", increase the heat to high and cook until the gravy is of the desired consistency.
- Tip-You can use any part of the chicken but I recommend thigh/leg pieces as they are the most tender!