Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Chicken and Tomato Curry

This reminds me of home-cooked food. The kind of food I grew up eating. Salan, chawal, daal, biryani, kabab, pulao. In other words, desi khana. I don't cook subcontinental food that much because I often want to try making things I haven't eaten a lot while growing up. New, different food- unchartered territory; and so I submerged myself into the world of risotto, tofu, pastry, and mousse. But ever so often, it's nice to go back to your roots and eat something which reminds you of your childhood- and to add a little something of your own in it. Whenever I do cook desi food (or subcontinental food for all of you who don't know what desi is), I thoroughly enjoy it. I find it extremely simple to prepare (maybe that's because I'm half Pakistani) and the house ends up smelling wonderful. I never, ever get that aromatic smell when I cook other dishes such as Italian, Chinese, Mexican, or Thai.

And so here is the extremely simple chicken tomato curry I made today. You can serve it with rice, or naan, or just on its own really (which is what I did). It's a curry without the whole swimming in gravy thing going on. It's moist and will do wonderfully to mix with rice but is fine enough to eat on its own.

6tbsp peanut oil
1 onion, chopped finely
1 green capsicum, chopped finely
2 tsp cardamom pods
2 bay leaves
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 can diced tomatoes
2 garlic cloves, crushed
350g chicken mince
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp paprika
600ml chicken stock

Heat half the oil in a saucepan, add the onion and capsicum and stir until softened. Add the bay leaves, cardamom pods, and cumin seeds and stir until fragrant. Season. Add the diced tomatoes and stir on medium heat for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the garlic cloves in a separate saucepan with the remaining oil. Add the chicken and spices and stir continuously, breaking up any lumps. Cook for around 10 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Transfer chicken mixture to saucepan with tomato mixture and add chicken stock. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and allow to simmer for 45 minutes, covered.


  1. This looks very tempting, I would love to have this with parathas or rice.

  2. Oh it looks wonderful. I love the way you describe the emotions you get when cooking this. Isn't amazing how smell can take you back?!


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