I really struggled with what name to give this curry and I had a good mind to just leave it at ‘My husband’s chicken curry’ 🙂 It is also the most delicious chicken curry you will ever have! My husband loves to cook and when we got married, he would cook this chicken curry every now and then. When I was pregnant with my second child, I had severe nausea and I did not feel like eating anything that I cooked. The smell of Chicken curry would make my nausea worse and so I pretty much gave up eating chicken for most of my pregnancy. Then everything changed when my husband decided to cook this chicken curry once sometime soon after my delivery. I tasted it and it was like ‘heaven on earth’! That first time after a long hiatus from chicken, I stuffed myself with chicken curry and rice! It was that good! And yay! I was back to loving chicken again 🙂
And my husband continued to perfect his chicken curry over the years. Since I don’t eat tomatoes now, he has stopped adding tomatoes too. Yet his curry remains so tasty! You may ask what is so special about this curry? Actually I used to wonder too since I use almost the same spices and everything else. For one, my husband is very systematic in the kitchen. (He is very systematic, period.) He will first clean the kitchen counter, chop up everything and arrange them in different bowls, blend up the spices etc. and only then begin making his curry. Its like a ritual for him. You see I am nothing like that! I chop and cook at the same time moving from stirring to chopping and chopping to stirring! Over the years I would ask him multiple times to note his recipe down but he never bothered to do that.
Finally a few weeks ago, I decided to video record him while he was making the curry. I noted down all the quantities of spices etc too and so finally I have this super tasty recipe to share with you too! Hey when a curry is this good, you have got share the love you know! I am still working on editing the video and will post it soon too.
So did I find what he did differently? I think its the magic of his hands. lol 🙂 Jokes apart, the key thing here is slow cooking. I realized that he sautéed his onions slowly till they get really really soft, added very little water and added lots and lots of black pepper and not many other spices. And finally the curry is slow cooked to get a perfect chicken curry!The potatoes are also an important part of this curry – sometimes I can’t decide what I like more – the chicken pieces or the ‘curry smothered’ potato pieces. (My mouth is watering!) This curry tastes delicious with rotis or plain white rice.
If you are strictly paleo and avoid potatoes, then you can substitute taro root for potatoes as I do sometimes. Well this recipe is for you guys. As for me, when it comes to chicken curry in our house, 9 out of 10 times, you can guess who will be making it 🙂
- 2 lbs chicken thigh pieces, cleaned and cut into bite size pieces
- 1 tsp kashmiri chilli pow (use less if you want mildly hot)
- 2 tsp coriander pow
- 1 tsp fennel powder
- ½ tsp turneric powder
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- About 2 tbsp chopped garlic
- 2 tbsp fresh ginger chopped finely
- 2 green chiles, slit length wise (optional)
- 10-12 whole black pepper corns (use fewer for less spicy)
- 3 whole cloves
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 large (or 3 medium) onions thinly sliced
- 3 tsp coriander pow
- 2 tsp black pepper powder (freshly ground)
- 1 tsp fennel powder (freshly ground)
- ½ tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 2 tbsp water
- 2 small potatoes cubed (or 2 medium taro root cubed)
- 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
- Marinate the chicken pieces with all the ingredients listed under marinade and let sit for at least 15 mins (up to 30 mins)
- Heat a broad bottomed cooking pot (which has a tight fitting lid). When hot add the coconut oil and the garlic, ginger and green chillies. After 30 secs, add the whole spices - black pepper, cloves and bay leaves. Saute for 1 minute on medium heat.
- Add the onions and sautee for about 8-10 mins on low until onions turn slightly golden and soft(This is very important step)
- Next add all the spices - coriander pow, black pepper powder, fennel powder, turmeric , salt and garam masala. Saute for about 2 mins on low till you get the nice aroma from the roasted spices.
- Add about 2 tbsp of water at this point to avoid burning of the spices.
- Add the marinated chicken pieces and the potato/taro pieces and mix everything well together.
- Cover with the lid and cook on low heat for about 25 mins stirring every 10 mins to stir and avoid scorching.
- Add the fresh cilantro and turn heat off.