Thursday, October 21, 2010

Chicken curry

So I made this curry last night, but decided I wasn't that crazy about it, so didn't take a photo. But then I had a bit more and thought "Actually this is great" and my husband said "Yeah it's really great."

And so I resolved to take a photo this morning. But then I forgot and turned the leftovers into a salad, so now I've got nothing to take a photo of. So here's another photo of me on holiday:

Yes I don't look too fat here until you have a look at where my back ends (bottom right)

Anyway, it was an approximation of a thing I got off River Cottage Bites and it's a nice curry although it'll make your house stink like the local Taj Star.

The really interesting thing about it is that I implemented some advice given to me, indirectly, by the film director Gurinda Chadha, who said on some cooking programme that her family always cooked chicken with the skin off. She said "I don't know why," but I do.

It's because chicken skin is unbelievably greasy and curry doesn't need to be any more greasy than it already is. So last night I skinned the chicken drumsticks before browning them as normal and the result was superb.

So here we go, the River Cottage Bites chicken curry, for about 4 people

8 chicken drumsticks (or thighs)
1 can chopped tomatoes
1 can coconut milk (I use those small turqouise ones from Waitrose)
1tsp coriander seeds
1tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 tsp ground turmeric
2 tsp ground cumin
1 fresh chilli, seeds in or there's no point
1 2cm square of fresh ginger
1 small onion

1 Grind together the seeds, the turmeric and the cumin and toast gently in a dry pan until the kitchen smells like the set of Slumdog Millionaire. It seems like a shiteload, but just tip it all in.

2 In a food processor, whizz up the ginger, onion and chilli to make a paste. Add some oil to the pan that the spices are cooking in and then tip in this paste. While that's cooking gently for about 10 mins, bloop into the processor the chopped tomatoes and coconut milk and whizz. Leave it there for a bit.

3 Skin the chicken and brown in a pan for about 4 minutes each side. Arrange in a baking dish

4 When the paste/spice mix has had about 10 mins, add in the tomato/coconut mixture and wibble this around until it's all bubbling. Then taste - it will be bland as hell, but spicy, so add salt bit by bit until it starts to taste like something nice. In the end I added - no joke - about four big pinches of salt, but it's best to start small.

5 Pour this mixture over the chicken and bake in a 180C oven, uncovered, for 1 hour.

Very nice re-heated, or cold. The leftover sauce makes a really delicious light curry dressing when mixed with yoghurt, cucumber and mint.

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