2 Tbsp (30 mL) light cooking oil
3 or 4 cardamom pods, bruised
4 or 5 whole black peppercorns
1 or 2 dried bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
3 or 4 whole cloves
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 or 3 green chilies, finely chopped
1 Tbsp (15 mL) ginger-garlic paste (made from 1 crushed garlic clove and 2 tsp/10 mL grated ginger)
1/2 tsp (2 mL) red chili powder
1/4 tsp (1 mL) cumin powder
1/4 tsp (1 mL) turmeric powder
1 tsp (1 mL) coriander powder
1/4 tsp (1 mL) garam masala powder (available at an Indian foods store)
2 medium-sized tomatoes, finely chopped
Salt, to taste
1/2 cup (125 mL) plain yogourt, stirred
2 large boneless chicken breasts, diced into 1 in (2.5 cm) cubes
Handful chopped fresh coriander leaves, for garnish

Heat oil in a thick-bottomed pan and saute cardamom, peppercorns, bay leaves, cinnamon stick, and cloves until they begin to sizzle. Add onions and green chilies, and fry for 3 to 5 minutes on medium-high heat until onions turn pink and tender. Add ginger-garlic paste and saut for another 1 to 2 minutes.

Add red chili, cumin, turmeric, coriander, and garam masala powders and fry for 1 minute. Mix in chopped tomatoes and salt; cook for a few minutes. Slowly stir in beaten yogourt, forming a smooth gravy base.

Add chicken pieces, a little water if necessary, and cook (covered) for 10 to 15 minutes on medium-low heat until chicken is done. Remove cardamom, peppercorns, bay leaves, cinnamon stick, and cloves before serving.

Garnish with fresh chopped coriander leaves and serve piping hot with a side of rotis or rice and a salad.

Prep time: 15 min | Cooking time: 30 min | Serves: 2 as a main, 4 as a side

source: "Curry Culture", alive #309, July 2008

About the Author

Meenakshi Agarwal is the creative cook behind Hooked on Heat (hookedonheat.com). Her recipes reflect a blend of her Malaysian and Indian heritage, Middle Eastern upbringing, and life in Canada.