Monday, June 20, 2011

Chicken Curry in a Hurry

I love rice and curry, but cooking it can be a daunting task.  Why?  Well, it's never a simple a one dish meal.  You usually have 2-3 dishes (or more) and of course the rice to make.  Although it is totally worth it in the end, it's a lot of cooking before you can sit down to eat.  I love short cuts.  I call this Chicken Curry in a Hurry because I used ground chicken to speed things up.  No time is wasted cutting, marinating or even touching raw meat.  You simply plop the ground chicken in and add your spices.  Voila.... chicken curry in about 20 minutes.

1lb of ground chicken (of course you can substitute any ground meat here)
1 onion chopped
2 inches of ginger grated
3-4 garlic cloves grated 
1-2 serrano or jalapeno chilies sliced (seed if you want it not so spicy)
10-20 curry leaves
1 inch piece of cinnamon
3-4 cloves
3-4 pods of green cardamon
1 small can of tomato sauce, crushed tomato or diced tomato
1 tsp of vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
1 Tbs of red chili powder (or cayenne)  - use less if you want it less spicy
1 Tbs of curry powder ( I used American curry powder by McCormick)
1/2 tsp of turmeric
1 cup of coconut milk (or half a can)
1 Tbs of canola oil
1 cup of water
squeeze of lime juice (optional)

In a large skillet or pan heat your canola oil on med-high heat.  Add your cinnamon stick, curry leaves, cloves and cardamom and saute for about 30-45 seconds.

Add your onions and  green chilies and saute for another minute.

Add your garlic and ginger and saute for another minute.

Add your ground chicken.

Now add your ground spices, salt and pepper.  Saute for another 2 minutes.

Next add your tomato (I recommend crushed tomato because it has both the pieces and the sauce).  Also add your tsp of vinegar.

Finally add 1/2 to 1 cup of water (depending on how much gravy you want in the dish).  Simmer for 5 minutes.

Add your coconut milk and simmer for another 2-3 minutes.   Taste for salt and seasoning here.  Your dish is done, you can turn off the stove.  After I turn off the stove,  I like to add a squeeze of fresh lime juice (about 1-2 tsp) and stir it in for a fresh taste and kick.  This step is optional.   

Serves 4-6 people.  This dish goes well with any rice and curry meal, roti, naan, bread etc..  Enjoy.

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