Monday, April 6, 2009

Best Chicken Curry

I made my first chicken curry when I was about 15 or so. My mum had these British cooking books at home, and I often went through them imagining being able to prepare each and every meal some day.
However, my ability to actually prepare most of these meals was limited, as the ingredients that you can pick up from your local grocer in England are not quite the same in Nigeria or Cote d'Ivoire.
On one bored afternoon, as I was looking through the cookbooks one more time, I stumbled upon the chicken curry recipe and discovered that we actually had all the ingredients at home. Thanks to my dear mum, who indulged all my cooking experiments, starting that day, I added one more dish to my repetoire.
The recipe in the book included a few ingredients like diced apples, which acted as a thickening agent of sorts, which after years of experimenting, I have decided to leave out. Depending on my mood, I add ingredients such as diced red and green peppers, or carrots; and sometimes leave out flour, tomatoes or even coconut milk. However, the following is a simple and well tested recipe which will be a crowd pleaser.
Diced up chicken (preferably dark meat, although white meat is excellent too)
Spices (curry powder, cayenne pepper, salt, thyme, mixed spiced (seasoned salt), ground garlic, ground ginger)
Onions (diced)
Diced tomatoes ( 1 small tomato for 6-8 thighs)
Coconut milk (1/4 a cup)
Flour (about a leveled tablespoon)
Oil (about a tablespoon)
Water (1/2 a cup)
Season the chicken with the combination of all spices and leave to marinate for at least an hour
Heat up pan and add oil
Add chicken and brown on all sides until tender (make sure completely cooked to your liking)
Add diced onion, cook until tender
Add tomatoes (optional), cook until tender
Add about a tablespoon of curry powder, mix thoroughly
Add coconut milk, stir
Dissolve flour in water and add to chicken
The curry sauce will start to thicken.... add more water if necessary
If necessary add salt, pepper and other spices to taste
Allow to simmer on low heat for 10 - 15 minutes continuously stirring.

Serve with white or brown rice and enjoy!

*I used chicken breast and added diced carrots to the one in the picture.
** I have used other recipes which pretty much involved tossing all of the ingredients in a pot and simmering on low heat, until the chicken is cooked.... works well for goat and lamb but not the best with chicken.

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