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North India-style Chicken Curry

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We’ve had this recipe sitting in our “folder” for some time but just hadn’t gotten around to giving it a try.  This past weekend, while getting our weekly menu planned out, I decided it was time to round up the ingredients and put this one together.  And the result was worth it – a nice mild curry with lots of flavor that is easy to put together on a week night after work.  Another bonus was that it made a lot, so even after feeding the family and a couple of guests for dinner, there was enough left over for lunch as well.

Gather Up:

  • 3 lbs whole chicken thighs, skin and bones removed and cut into 1″ chunks (yield about 2 lbs meat)
  • 1/2 lb mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 lb fresh baby spinach
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2″ long piece of ginger root, peeled and minced
  • 4 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped (stems and all)
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tbsp EVOO
  • 1-1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp ground cumin seeds
  • 2 tsp ground coriander seeds
  • 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds (in our local Fred Meyer, I found these in the “natural” foods bulk spice section)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 head riced cauliflower (not pictured)
  • 1/4 cup cream-top plain yogurt (completely optional)

Start out getting everything cut and prepped and sorted into prep bowls.  We’ve got the chicken, spinach, mushrooms, and onions separated in the large bowls.  Ginger and garlic are combined in one of the small bowls, and the turmeric, paprika, coriander, cumin, and salt combined in the other.  Not shown is the cauliflower, which should get started around the same time, and the cilantro isn’t chopped quite yet.

In a large stock pot, heat the olive oil on medium-high heat.  When hot, toss in the fenugreek seeds and let them cook for just a few seconds before tossing in the onions and mushrooms.  Cook these for about 5 minutes until they start to brown a little.  At the same time you are doing this, you should have the pot of cauliflower starting to steam.

Add in the chicken and the spice mixture.  Stir and cook until the chicken is no longer pink on the outside (but not yet cooked through) – about 5 minutes.  Pour in the tomatoes, stir well, and cover the pot.  Adjust the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 8 minutes.  At some point during this simmering time, your cauliflower should be about ready to transfer to the food processor.

Stir in the spinach (this is why you needed the big stock pot) to mix well, then cover the pot again and continue to simmer for about 4 more minutes to wilt it while you are wrapping up the cauliflower and getting it into a separate serving bowl.  Once the spinach is wilted, turn off the heat and stir in the lemon juice and cilantro.  Mix well, then transfer the whole works to a large serving bowl.

To serve, place a quarter- to third-cup of riced cauliflower in a bowl, then dish the curry over top (including as much or as little broth as you like).  If you like, you can spoon a tablespoon of plain cream-top (that’s the full-fat stuff) yogurt over the top, and garnish with a little fresh cilantro.  Dig in!

North India-style Chicken Curry
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Main Dish
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 3 lbs whole chicken thighs, skin and bones removed and cut into 1″ chunks (yield about 2 lbs meat)
  • ½ lb mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 lb fresh baby spinach
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2″ long piece of ginger root, peeled and minced
  • 4 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped (stems and all)
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1-1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp ground cumin seeds
  • 2 tsp ground coriander seeds
  • ½ tsp fenugreek seeds
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 1 head riced cauliflower (see recipe)
  • ¼ cup cream-top plain yogurt (completely optional)
Instructions
  1. Start out getting everything cut and prepped and sorted into prep bowls.
  2. In a large stock pot, heat the olive oil on medium-high heat. When hot, toss in the fenugreek seeds and let them cook for just a few seconds before tossing in the onions and mushrooms. Cook these for about 5 minutes until they start to brown a little. At the same time you are doing this, you should have the pot of cauliflower starting to steam.
  3. Add in the chicken and the spice mixture. Stir and cook until the chicken is no longer pink on the outside (but not yet cooked through) – about 5 minutes. Pour in the tomatoes, stir well, and cover the pot. Adjust the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 8 minutes. At some point during this simmering time, your cauliflower should be about ready to transfer to the food processor.
  4. Stir in the spinach (this is why you needed the big stock pot) to mix well, then cover the pot again and continue to simmer for about 4 more minutes to wilt it while you are wrapping up the cauliflower and getting it into a separate serving bowl. Once the spinach is wilted, turn off the heat and stir in the lemon juice and cilantro. Mix well, then transfer the whole works to a large serving bowl.
  5. To serve, place a quarter- to third-cup of riced cauliflower in a bowl, then dish the curry over top (including as much or as little broth as you like). If you like, you can spoon a tablespoon of plain cream-top (that’s the full-fat stuff) yogurt over the top, and garnish with a little fresh cilantro.

 

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