Monday, June 7, 2010

Mughlai Chicken

I cooked a new dish on the weekend, something I haven't done for a while. Must get back into it, I do love cooking. This recipe comes from Nigella Lawson's book called Feast. As one would expect from a Nigella recipe, it's not exactly the healthiest thing on the planet, but it is yummy.

It serves 8-10 as part of a feast. I did a rough calorie count on it, and it comes out at 373-298 calories per serve, not as high as I expected it would be actually.

One tip that Nigella has is to make this the day before, this way the flavours develop overnight. Don't be put off by the extensive ingredient list, it really is simple to make, and quite delicious, well worth making.


  • 2.5cm fresh ginger, peeled
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp dried chilli
  • 4 tbsp ground almonds (I used almond meal)
  • 125ml water
  • 5 cardamom pods, bruised
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 cloves
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1.5kg chicken thigh fillets, each cut in 2
  • 2 onions
  • 250ml Greek yoghurt
  • 250ml chicken stock
  • 125ml double cream
  • 100g sultanas
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 75g flaked almonds, toasted (to toast nuts, simply shake them about in a hot dry pan until scorched in parts)

Put the ginger, garlic, cumin, coriander and chilli into a food processor, and blend to a paste. Add the ground almonds and water, then blend again, and set aside.

Put the cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, bay leaves and cloves into a small bowl.

Heat the oil in a large pan and add the chicken pieces - in batches so they fry rather than stew, and cook them just long enough to seal on both sides, then remove to a dish.

Tip in the bowlful of spices and turn them in the oil. Peel and finely chop the onions, add to the pan of spices, and cook until softened and lightly browned, but keep the heat gentle and stir frequently, to avoid them catching. Pour in the blended paste, and cook everything until it begins to colour (mine didn't change colour, so after a few minutes I got bored and moved onto the next step). Add the yoghurt, 125ml at a time, stirring it in to make a sauce; then stir in the stock, cream and sultanas.

Put the browned chicken back into the pan, along with any juices that have collected under them, and sprinkle over the garam masala, sugar and salt. Cover and cook on a gentle heat for 20 minutes, testing to make sure the chicken meat is cooked through.

It's at this stage that you take the pan off the heat and leave it to cool overnight (I chucked mine in the fridge after an hour or so, as I didn't like the idea of the chicken coming up to room temperature).

The next day, reheat, scatter over the toasted flaked almonds, and serve.

Bon Apetit!

No comments: