As I’ve mentioned before, I worked as a server in an Indian restaurant in college- and I absolutely loved the food. It’s been difficult to find food that compares elsewhere. We had some pretty meek tikka masala when we were in Ireland on our honeymoon. I’ve made canned curry a few times, but it just isn’t the same.
•can of diced tomatoes (I used petite diced)
• can of unsweetened coconut milk
•veggies of your choice (I used potatoes and red pepper, other good ideas are peas, channa aka chick peas, or meat)
•spices: curry powder, cumin, cinnamon, Paprika, turmeric and your basic salt and pepper. You can also get fancy dango and add saffron if you’re a baller. I used limited cinnamon and cumin because I don’t want it to taste like pumpkin pie or tacos.
•ginger and garlic if you’re feeling it.
First, toast your spices in a dry pan over medium heat. This brings out their flavor -big time. Thanks for that tip Alton Brown!
Next add your can of diced tomatoes and stir in the veggies or meat. Once combined, add your can of coconut milk.
Cover until your veggies are cooked, and then take off the lid so the sauce can cook off the excess water.
Now all you need is patience and allow the liquid sauce to reduce to a creamy curry.
I used a great recipie I found on Pinterest for the naan.
1/2 cup water
2 tsp dry active yeast
1 tsp sugar.
Stir briefly, then let sit until the mixture turns foamy.
While you’re waiting, mix up in a large bowl:
1/3 cup yogurt
1/4 cup oil
When the yeast mixture is foamy, pour into the yogurt mixture.
Then slowly add in:
2 1/2 cups of flour
1 tsp salt
Mix until combined, if you find the dough too sticky, add more flour until the dough is soft.
Kneed for about 3 mins, and then place the dough in a clean bowl, covered with a kitchen towel for an hour until it’s risen.
Now you simply cut the dough into pieces and fry over medium heat in a dry pan.
The key to great naan is to roll the dough very thin- too thick and it’s too doughy and no good.
To make the tikka chicken marinade combine:
The spices used in the curry, yogurt, and lemon juice to taste. Place your chicken chunks in, and leave it in the fridge to soak up that amazing flavor. The yogurt keeps the chicken nice and moist, perfect for grilling.
You could grill breasts or drum sticks, or make kebabs. I sautéed the chunks but it’s very versitle.
The Biyrani rice is simply veggies, cashews and basmati rice fried together with the same variety of spices used to make the curry.
Cucumber raita is the easiest of them all:
Yogurt + diced cucumber + salt and pepper. The longer you let it rest in the fridge, the better the flavor.
I hope you give Indian food a try, it’s one of our favorite cuisines, and can be made vegan, veggitarian and it’s healthy and afforable.