Showing posts with label gravy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gravy. Show all posts

Jan 9, 2017

Malai Methi Murgh

malai methi murgh recipe chicken curry indian fenugreek cream creamy easy

Malai means cream, methi means fenugreek, and murgh means chicken. In this dish chicken is simmered until meltingly tender in a rich, creamy gravy fragrant with fenugreek and traditional aromatic spices. A true North Indian delicacy that's mild in heat yet boldly spiced and flavorsome. A perfect recipe for a cozy and comforting Fall or Winter supper when paired with rice or rotis!

malai methi murgh recipe chicken curry indian fenugreek cream creamy easy

Fenugreek and I have not always been such good friends. It's not a familiar flavor to the Western palate and can easily overpower a dish if not used properly and judiciously. This dish uses the dried leaves of fenugreek which are usually available at any Indian grocers' by the name kasoori methi.

Kasoori Methi or dried fenugreek leaves usually come sealed in foil in a small box of a few ounces.

Dried fenugreek leaves or kasoori methi require a little special treatment to get them to release their rich and complex flavor without becoming bitter or overwhelming. As with herbs in general, fenugreek's flavor is much more concentrated in the dried form while the fresh leaves are much milder. A few pinches of the dried herb is all that's necessary to imbibe it's earthy flavor often said to be a bittersweet blend of celery, fennel, and maple.
The herb kasoori methi or dried fenugreek leaves.
Cream is the perfect agent to mellow the sharpness of kasoori methi and best bring out the rich, complex flavor. Never fry kasoori methi as it may scorch and turn unpalatably bitter. (One of my first unfriendly encounters with kasoori methi was the result of just such a scorching.) Only add the kasoori methi towards the end of the dish after the cream or other liquid has been added. Be sure to crush the kasoori methi between your fingers when adding it to a dish to help release it's flavor. Not more than a tablespoonful is usually all that's necessary, anymore than that in a recipe is cause for grave suspicion! If you follow all these suggestions you'll be rewarded with a gravy whose velvety texture is enhanced and warmly accented with kasoori methi's unique and robust flavor. If you wish to learn more about fenugreek when used as a spice, fresh herb, or dried herb you may do so on a post I did here. Despite any previous mishaps, I think you'll find when fenugreek is used gently and judiciously it's quite the taste sensation!

1 kg/2lbs chicken pieces, skinless and bone in
3 TBS cooking oil or ghee (clarified butter)
1 C onions, thinly sliced into half moons
2 TBS garlic/lahsun paste
2 TBS ginger/adrak paste
2-3 green chilis/hari mirch, finely chopped (omit for less heat)
1 TBS coriander/dhania
1 tsp turmeric/haldi
2 tsp garam masala
5 green cardamoms/elaichi, bruised with mortar and pestle
3 black cardamoms/badi elaichi, bruised with mortar and pestle
5 cloves/laung
1 inch piece of cassia bark/dalchini (or cinnamon stick)
10 black peppercorns/kali mirch, ground coarsely
2 cassia leaves/
1 C milk mixed with 1/4 C cream
1 C water or stock/shorba
1/2 to 1 TBS dried fenugreek leaves/kasoori methi

Here's what to do:
1) Heat oil or ghee with 1 teaspoon salt over medium high heat in a deep heavy bottomed skillet or kadhai for 4-5 minutes. Add thinly sliced onions and fry for 8-10 minutes until medium brown. Add green chilis, garlic, and ginger paste and fry for 2 minutes stirring well. Add coriander, turmeric, garam masala, green cardamoms, black cardamoms, cloves, cassia bark, black peppercorns, and cassia leaves. Stir well and cook mixture for at least 2 minutes or until raw smell leaves spices.

2) Add chicken pieces to the pan. Allow chicken pieces to cook for about 3 minutes. Remove pan from heat and stir in milk mixed with cream. Return pan to heat and bring to simmer over medium heat.

3) Add 1 to 2 cups water or stock (or enough to cover chicken by at least a half an inch of liquid)  to chicken mixture in pan. Crumble dried fenugreek leaves/kasoori methi over chicken mixture and stir in well.

4) Allow to simmer over medium covered for 20 to 25 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and oil separates from the gravy. Salt to taste and serve with rice and/or rotis.

Nov 22, 2016

Chettinad Style Egg Curry

Chettinad Style Egg Curry black pepper, chettinad, eggs, Indian, recipe, south, spicy, tamil nadu, curry, gravy, kuzhambu, easy, vegetarian, hard boiled,

Chettinad is a region of southern India famed for it's vibrant and fiery cuisine. Hard boiled eggs are tossed in a delectably spicy sauce in this signature dish from the area. Black pepper, cloves, cumin, red chili, and cardamom are first freshly ground for maximum flavor. The spices are then simmered to perfection recipe in a rich tomato gravy that compliments the richness of the eggs. Best served with steamed rice or hot chapattis.

Chettinad Style Egg Curry black pepper, chettinad, eggs, Indian, recipe, south, spicy, tamil nadu, curry, gravy, kuzhambu, easy, vegetarian, hard boiled,

I've been making this recipe for so long I've forgotten where I got the recipe. I think it was from the Times of India. It has become a family favorite at our house. At the time I had never heard of an egg curry or egg gravy dish. This recipe is quite spicy and definitely for those who like a lot of heat. Not for the timid in taste at all! Get your best Tellicherry peppercorns out for this dish as they're the star of the show here! The pepper is beautifully balanced by the cumin, cloves, cardamom, and coriander. Kashmiri mirch adds an extra dimension to the black pepper's pungent heat but does not overpower it. The spicy sauce over hard boiled eggs is brilliant take of the old classic combination of cracked black pepper and eggs. You don't have to fry the eggs if you don't wish to. Another way to serve this dish is to shallowly score the hard boiled eggs a few times end to end with a knife so they soak up a bit of the sauce. Either way this makes quite a tasty lunch or dinner served with rice or chapattis. Enjoy!

5-6 hard boiled eggs, peeled
3 TBS cooking oil
1 C onion, diced finely
1 TBS garlic/lahsun paste
1 TBS ginger/adrak paste
1 tsp black mustard/rai seeds
3 large tomatoes (about 1&1/2C) chopped roughly or pureed
Grind until smooth for masala:
3 green cardamoms/elaichi
3 cloves/laung
2 tsp black peppercorns/kali mirch
2 tsp coriander/dhania
2 tsp cumin/jeera
2 tsp Kashmiri mirch (or 1 tsp paprika pllus 1 tsp cayenne)
1 tsp shahi jeera/black cumin (optional)
1/2 tsp turmeric/haldi

Here's what to do:
1) Grind all spices listed for masala into powder and set aside. (I used an electric coffee grinder.)

2) Heat oil and 1 teaspoonful salt in a kadhai or deep heavy bottomed skillet for 7 minutes. Fry peeled hard boiled eggs on oil about 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. (If you wish to be authentic and have yellow fingers for a weeks you can rub the eggs with a bit of turmeric.) Put fried eggs aside and continue to next step.

3) Add mustard seeds to the same salted oil and fry for a minute. Add finely diced onions and fry until golden brown. 

4) Add ground masala powder, garlic paste, and ginger paste to fried onions. Stir well and fry for two minutes. Add masala powder and tomatoes to mixture and allow to simmer for five minutes ir until oil separates from mixture.

5) Add 1 cup of water to to fried mixture and allow to simmer for 10 minutes or until sauce is to desired consistency. Salt to taste and stir in fried hard boiled eggs. Serve with rice and or chapattis.

Helpful Hints:
You don't have to fry the eggs if you don't wish to. Another way this dish is typically served is with the hard boiled eggs shallowly scored a few times end to end with a knife so they soak up a bit of the sauce.

The shahi jeera/black cumin is traditional but it won't alter the flavor of the dish is you leave it out. It's delicate flavor gets a bit covered up by all the pepper and cumin anyway.