I seriously have an obsession with chicken curry and it is one that I have been somewhat compulsive in my efforts to attain perfection. I and my friend Jack always seek to create curry spice pastes from scratch. Nothing is more satisfying for me than gathering together wonderfully colorful, aromatic and pungent spices and condiments, then pounding or blending them into a lovely saffron-colored spice paste.
So here is a tried and tested recipe for the chicken curry that presents a heart-warming, complex spicy blend of wonderfully natural flavors. Curry always come together better the next day, so prepare this a day ahead to enjoy a much more enhanced flavor.
Any chicken dish would not be complete without starting with a good marinade. Adding sauce to the chicken sauce introduces a deeper, fuller flavor that one could not really put their finger on, but without doubt, thoroughly enjoyed! This chicken curry will be worthy of your time..tender, spicy, flavorful and rich, served with white rice.
- 1 large onion
- 6 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- 50g ginger, roughly chopped
- 4 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 1 tsp chili flakes
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp caster sugar
- 400g can chopped tomatoes
- 8 chicken thighs, skinned, boneless (about 800g)
- 250ml hot chicken stock
- 2 tbsp chopped coriander
- Roughly chop 1 large onion, transfer to a small food processor, and add 3 tbsp of water – process to a slack paste. You could use a stick blender for this or coarsely grate the onion into a bowl.
- Put 6 roughly chopped garlic cloves and 50g roughly chopped ginger into the same food processor and add 4 tbsp water – process until smooth and spoon into another small bowl.
- Heat 4 tbsp vegetable oil in a wok or sturdy pan set over a medium heat.
- Combine 2 tsp cumin seeds and 1 tsp fennel seeds with a 5cm cinnamon stick and 1 tsp chilli flakes and add to the pan in one go. Swirl everything around for about 30 secs until the spices release a fragrant aroma.
- Add the onion paste – it will splutter in the beginning. Fry until the water evaporates and the onions turn a lovely dark golden.
- Add the garlic and ginger paste and cook for another 2 mins – stirring all the time.
- Stir in 1 tsp garam masala, 1 tsp turmeric, and 1 tsp caster sugar and continue cooking for 20 secs before tipping in a 400g can chopped tomatoes.
- Continue cooking on a medium heat for about 10 mins without a lid until the tomatoes reduce and darken.
- Cut 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs into 3cm chunks and add to the pan once the tomatoes have thickened to a paste.
- Cook for 5 mins to coat the chicken in the masala and seal in the juices, and then pour over 2the 50ml hot chicken stock.
- Simmer for 8-10 mins without a lid until the chicken is tender and the masala lightly thickened – you might need to add an extra ladleful of stock or water if the curry needs it.
- Sprinkle with 2 tbsp chopped coriander and serve with Indian flatbreads or fluffy basmati rice and a pot of yogurt on the side.