Archive for the ‘Asian’ Category

Ever since moving to the US, I started trying (and liking) the many Indian restaurants which exist around here. One of my favorite dishes is the Chicken tikka masala, a dish made with chicken chunks in a creamy sauce. But I always thought that it would be hard to make, so when I found one recipe for that dish which was supposed to be easy (“Quick Chicken Tikka Masala”) I decided to give it a try. And… it definitely wasn’t the same thing as I had tried – it tasted good, but I don’t think I can call that by the original name.


The chicken was not cubed, but that wasn’t the main issue (I could easily have done that myself). The sauce, instead of the rich, creamy sauce I was used to, was a chunky, lighter version. Maybe using cream instead of yogurt, and possibly not blending the sauce caused that, so some later time I’ll have to try a different recipe to see if it will work out better. At the end it was tasty, as I mentioned before, and indeed quite quick, but it didn’t meet the expectations that I had for that dish.

Ingredients (for 4 people):

  • 1 lb. chicken tenders
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 4 tsp. garam masala (a blend of spices used in many Indian dishes; I found it in my local supermarket)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 tbsp. olive oil
  • 4 tbsp. fresh ginger, minced
  • 1/3 cup whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup parsley for decoration

Stir the garam masala, salt and turmeric. Sprinkle the chicken with 1/2 of the mixture and reserve the rest. Dredge the chicken on the flour, then cook it on a large skillet with 2 tbsp. of the oil over medium heat, about 2 minutes per side until brown, then reserve.

Heat the remaining oil on the pan, then add the onions, garlic and ginger, cooking until they start to brown, stirring frequently. Add the remaining spice mix and stir. Add the tomatoes, and bring it to a simmer, stirring and breaking the tomatoes. Cook for another 5 minutes, until it thickens.

Stir in the cream and the chicken. Cook over medium heat until the chicken is cooked through.

Garnish with the parsley, then serve with white rice.



Yogurt chicken curry

Posted: February 9, 2012 in Asian, Food, Main course, Poultry

Growing up in Brazil I didn’t have a chance to have many curry dishes. There just aren’t many applications of this spice (or, as I learned later, mix of different spices) in the Brazilian cuisine, and apart from an occasion sprinkle of curry in an egg salad my mother would prepare, I just didn’t grow up eating this ingredient.


After moving to the Seattle area, the large number of Indian restaurants (and other Southeast Asian restaurants as well) in the region reintroduced me to curry dishes. I actually always liked it, but rarely prepared something with it. This one is a recipe which I already prepared once, and it’s quite simple and fast to prepare. The most difficult thing this time was that I only had chicken thighs and I spent a lot of time trimming off the fat and the tendons, but if I had chicken breast / tenders it would have really been something that could be prepared in around 30 minutes.

The end result was quite good, especially given its simplicity. I have seen variations of this recipe in some websites that are even simpler (without the basil or onions), but I think they give a nice touch to the taste.

Ingredients (3 people):

  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 9 fingerling potatoes
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 3 tsp. curry powder
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped basil
  • salt & pepper

Remove as much of the fat from the chicken thighs as you’re willing to (that’s a lot of work, which is why I mentioned that using chicken breasts would be easier), and cut them into bite-sized pieces. Season them with salt and pepper and reserve.

Meanwhile, boil water in a medium pan to cook the potatoes, and when they’re done (~10-15 minutes), remove the hot water and add cold water (or some ice cubes, if the tap water isn’t too cold) to stop the cooking.

Heat the oil in a large, non-stick pan and add the onions, seasoning it with salt and pepper. Cook until it almost start to burn (about 5-10 minutes), mixing often, then add the chicken and cook on high heat for 2 minutes, to sear the meat. Add the water, then cook it over medium heat for about 10 minutes, until the chicken is done (the water will have reduced at least by half). Add the curry powder and mix it well, then add the potatoes and the yogurt, mixing well to create a uniform sauce.

At the end, add the basil to the pan and cook for another 2 minutes to get the flavors of the herb in the sauce. Serve with white rice.