I’ll be the first to admit it. I’m not a big fan of Indian flavors. I’m sorry. I dislike spicy food and am super sensitive to smells. I don’t know why I can handle pungent aged cheese but not curry. I’m doing my very best to get over this and that has to count for something, right?
I don’t mind being the naive American who asks for her dishes “not spicy”. And I also don’t mind being the naive American who learns to cook Indian dishes in a way that she appreciates both their level of spiciness as well as their mild seasonings. The recipe that I share with you here is very mild both in spiciness and seasoning (feel free to increase them, if you’d like)… but it’s Indian influence is clear.
Makes 10 large entree portions
2 onions, diced
1 cup shredded carrots
4 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 pounds of boneless/skinless chicken thighs, cubed (or firm tofu, cubed)
4 cans coconut milk
3 tablespoons curry powder**
2 teaspoons ground cumin**
2 teaspoons ground cardamom**
1 teaspoon ground tumeric**
1 teaspoon ground ginger**
2 teaspoons crushed garlic
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Chopped cilantro to garnish
**Instead of the individual spices, you can use 5 tablespoons of Trader Joe’s Curry Powder Mix.
1. Heat butter and oil in a large heavy bottom pot/dutch oven, over medium heat.
2. Add onions and carrots and saute until softened.
3. Add garlic and enough water to cover vegetables (about 1 1/2 cups). Cover and let simmer for about 20 minutes, until the onions break down and water evaporates.
4. Meanwhile, season the chicken/tofu with salt and pepper. Working in batches, broil for about 6 minutes, just until a slight crust has formed. Repeat with remaining chicken/tofu.
5. Add coconut milk and curry powder to the pot. Mix and taste. Add salt/pepper to your taste.
6. Bring back to a simmer.
7a. If using chicken: Add broiled chicken to pot. Lower heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
7b. If using tofu: Let simmer for 10-15 minutes. Add broiled tofu to pot. Turn off heat.
8. Optional: Serve over basmati or jasmine rice.