K so I’m done finals, I made it home to California, and I’m all settled in with the fam…now where were we? Indian food! Right! O soul healing comfort food, o heavenly combinations of spices, how I love thee……….too much? Fine. It’s been a long week. My Indian feast was a bit of a pre-exams send off meal, providing me with a nice chance to try something new before the academic world kicked me into a never ending pit of despair, 300 style. Assembling and frying the pakoras distracted me from my impending exams, the three of which all took place within the same 48 hours. Rolling out and cooking the naan lifted the weight of my 12 page take home exam from my shoulders and in the end my chicken masala relieved my steadily increasing stress over a philosophy paper on a “public experience I’d had, thought about, or imagined.” Yup. Existentialism. My goodness. Anyways, you’ve already read about how amaaazing the naan and pakora were, now let me lay some chicken masala on you. Imagine a curry/stew that’s thick, complex, and tomatoey, add in some moist chicken thigh meat, then serve it over some rice with fresh naan and try not to faint.
So it all begins with some oil, some onions, and some spices. Simple? Simple. In a heavy bottomed pot throw in some oil and let it get hot. Once your oil is ready, add in a diced onion and let it sauté for a bit. Once the onions start to get a bit more translucent throw in your spices and stir your onions and spices together. At this point your onions and spices are going to cook together and smell aaaaaaaaaaaawesome. I think I almost enjoy the smell of food more than tasting it…emphasis on the almost.
So I mentioned in my earlier post about how I’ve been eating Indian food for years yeah? Well I was always a fan of tandoori and such but it took me a while to develop a taste for curries. I had grown up on Burmese curries, which are lighter and less spicy than Indian curries, so these Indian curries were a bit strange/hard to get used to. Once I did get into curries I always found myself particularly drawn to chicken masala. There was something about that combination of sweet tomatoes and onions and spices that really did it for me. Yummaaaaay. So when your onions and spices have been cookin for about 5 minutes and are starting to smell and look real good/translucent add in your tomatoes and get to cookin.
It will look quite soupy but thas all good. Cover it up and let it cook down for about ten minutes. It’ll get a bit thicker and delicious. Thas da good stuff
At this point throw in some chicken so it can cook more while your sauce is cooking down. I used boneless skinless chicken thighs and chopped them up into cubes. I cleaned a bit of the extra sinew and skin and such then threw them into the pot. It took about twenty more minutes to cook down all the way and get delicious. It was perfect! Thick and juicy and delicious. Check it.
Luckily I had some rice and naan to eat with my curry! So good. Delicious Indian feast and successful procrastination mechanism all in one! Yaaaaaaaaaaay
- 2 medium onions, chopped
- 4 tblsp oil
- 1 1/2 cup canned diced tomatoes, do not strain, you need the juice!
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 lb chicken thighs, boneless and skinless, chopped into cubes
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp chili
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
In a heavy pot heat your oil on medium-high heat. Once the oil is ready add in the chopped onions. Let the onions cook for about 3 minutes, till they become soft but not translucent. Add in garam masala, ground ginger, tumeric, chili, cumin, and ground coriander. Stir spices and onions till combined and let cook for about 5 minutes. Add diced tomatoes and water. Stir to combine then cover and let cook for ten minutes at a soft boil. Remove any extra sinew, skin, or nasty bits from chicken and add to pot. Cover and let cook for about 15-20 minutes. Masala is done when chicken is cooked through and the sauce has cooked down and thickened. Once ready remove from heat and serve with rice and/or naan.