Friday, July 9, 2010

Korma Chicken

PRINT RECIPEKorma chicken is a mild Indian chicken curry that is finished with yogurt. If you want your dish to be a bit more spicy add hot chili powder (carefully) instead of mild. The hot chili powder will fire it up with about ¼ the amount as called for. Remember you can always add but you can’t take it out. This dish usually has finely minced blanched almonds and cilantro in it. But my husband doesn’t care for either. So feel free to add them when you make this dish. Another nice addition would be a cinnamon stick.

My favorite Indian restaurant in town makes an amazing Korma 1/2 Chicken that is served with Basmati Rice and a chutney assortment that is to die for. I didn’t have the energy to get there so I fudged it and this is what I came up with.

My version of Korma Chicken may not be so authentic but subs pretty well. I used skin on bone in chicken thighs. That took about 45 min. to cook. For a quicker meal use breast meat and cut the cooking time by 15 minutes.

I feel that you should always cook chicken pieces whole when stewing to keep them juicy. But if you choose to cut up the chicken be careful not to dry it out by over cooking it.

The trick to not having a flat flavored curry is to toast the spices in a non-stick pan to wake up the spices and to allow the spices to cook for about 3 – 4 min. when you add it to the pot before adding the liquid to bring out the flavor
The sauce was thinner than at my favorite restaurant but the fragrant basmati rice absorbed the sauce well and made the dish complete.

I was surprised to discover that the leftover chicken tasted better the next day.
By letting the chicken sit in the sauce overnight in the fridge. It allowed the curry flavor to absorb in to the chicken and the sauce even heated up thicker.

This made me think that maybe that’s why the korma chicken at the restaurant is flavored all the way through and the sauce is thicker. Restaurants have to make this dish ahead of time and reheat it to serve… because no one will wait an hour for their meal to cook.

To cook the basmati rice follow the “How to cook brown and white rice” link and use 1 cup of rice to 1 ½ cups of water. Basmati rice is a fragrant, light and fluffy loose grain rice that is well worth making with any curry dish.

3 pounds bone in chicken thighs or drumsticks or 2 ½ pounds breast meat
Salt  and pepper (to season chicken)
1 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. oil
2 whole bay leaves
1 large onion, cut small
1 Tbsp. ginger, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup water
1 cup plain greek yogurt

SEASONINGS (lightly toasted)
1 ½ tsp. ground coriander
1 ½ tsp. ground cumin
1 ½ tsp. ground turmeric
1 ½ tsp. chili poweder
1 ½ tsp. garam masala

  1. Place a large skillet over med heat.
  2. Add butter and oil; toast bay leaves in the oil for about 30 seconds.
  3. Add onions and cook till soft; about 5 – 6 min.
  4. Add ginger and garlic; cook for another minute.
  5. Add toasted seasonings; cook for about 3-4 min, to bring out the flavor.
  6. Season chicken with salt and pepper; move seasoned onions to the edge of the pan and place the chicken in the middle of the skillet – skin side down (if you keep the skin on).
  7. Add water and cover; cook for 15 min.
  8. Turn chicken over; cover; cook for another 15 min.
  9. Remove chicken from the pan and stir in the yogurt until sauce is smooth.
  10. Put the chicken back in the sauce and let cook; uncovered - for another 15 min or until the chicken is cooked through.

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