This is an authentic Indian curry that was given to me by the Sami family. It has been passed down through several generations despite the family being ejected from their traditional home in the India/Pakistan partitions in the late 1940’s, then fleeing to Africa and subsequently being persecuted in Kenya before finally finding a safe haven in the UK.
None of the fresh ingredients in this recipe are on the Common Allergen List. Check that the Garam Masala does not contain any allergens and pick your choice of chilli to make this recipe suitable to your own tastes. Made according to the recipe, this dish would be described as mild. It is very enjoyable, very tasty. I recommend that you do not alter the balance of ingredients too much as this will affect the whole dish.
This will make 4 good portions.
4 large chicken breasts chopped into cubes about the size of a sprout – 1 inch/25mm
6 large white onions, peeled and chopped small about ¼ inch/6mm
For the paste
10 cloves garlic
Fresh ginger about golf ball size
1 or 2 mild green chillies to taste. Usually, the smoother the chilli skin, the milder the taste.
Chop all the ingredients and put them into a pestle and mortar and grind down to achieve a well-mixed and evenly crushed consistency.
400g tin chopped tomatoes
1 to 1½ TABLESPOON tomato puree
2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon turmeric powder
Vegetable/sunflower oil to suit
2 teaspoon Garam Masala.
Check ingredients of the Garam Masala. I avoid any mix that contains mustard or fenugreek.
The blend I use contains Coriander, Cassia (a relative of the cinnamon family), ginger and cloves.
Note: The Garam Masala is NOT added until the end of cooking.
Heat the oil and gently fry the onions for 10 minutes or so, until they start to turn a golden brown colour but do not burn them. There may seem a lot of onions but they will reduce in volume as you cook.
Add the chopped and ground chilli/garlic/ginger mixture, stir in and cook gently for 5 to 10 minutes. If the mixture starts to stick, add a small amount of cold water to deglaze the pan.
Add tomato puree and tinned tomatoes
Add turmeric and salt. DO NOT add the garam masala yet.
Stir and cook gently for 5 minutes.
Turn the heat to high and add the chopped chicken, stirring to coat all the pieces with the sauce.
As soon as the mixture is up to temperature (1 to 2 minutes), turn the heat down to medium/low and cover with a lid. Cook gently/simmer for 15 minutes until the chicken starts to tenderise. Do not let the mixture burn and add a small amount of HOT water if the mixture begins to dry out.
Add the garam masala and stir into all the mixture, replace the lid.
Continue to cook gently/simmer for a further 5 minutes, and add some more HOT water if the mixture begins to dry out.
Turn the heat off, remove the lid and give the mixture a final stir.
Your curry is now ready. Enjoy.
I prefer to cook the curry one day, leave it to cool and let it absorb all the flavours overnight. The curry can also be frozen. Simply re-heat in a saucepan when needed and serve with rice, poppadum, naan bread or roti. A sprinkle of chopped coriander dresses the dish nicely.
This curry can also be made with beef, lamb or pork.
For a vegetarian/vegan curry, add part cooked potatoes and cauliflower. Pre-boil them for 10 minutes or so to start the cooking process before adding to the mixture.