Tag Archives: Indian Food

Chicken and Rice Flavored with Garam Masala

Chicken_and_Rice_with_Garam_Masala (1 of 1)Hi guys! I probably should have thrown something on the grill out back because it was the fist nice day since last fall, but I ended up making this simple and delicious chicken dish last night instead. This dish features garam masala, which is actually a (yummy) blend of ground spices, and is commonly used in Northern Indian cooking. I’ve never made garam masala my self, since it’s readily available at Indian markets. I’ve found that you need to discard what you have on-hand every 6 months, because freshness, as with most ground spices, is very important to a dish. I enjoyed this dish, and I hope you will to — please consider giving it a try tonight!

2 Tbsp vegetable oil
3 garlic cloves, very finely grated or minced
2 1/2 lbs skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 2-inch pieces
2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
2 2/3 cups uncooked jasmine rice
4 tsp salt
4 cups chicken stock
2 Tbsp coarsely chopped cilantro

Heat oil in a large wok or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Increase heat to medium high. Add chicken and brown on all sides, about 5 minutes.

Stir in garam masala and cayenne pepper. Stir in rice and salt, and then the chicken stock. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover wok and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove wok from heat and let stand for an additional minutes. Fluff with a fork, garnish with cilantro and serve.

Serves 4.

Spicy Lamb Stew in a Cashew Cream Sauce

Lamb_Korma (1 of 1)Here’s another dish that’s loaded with fantastic flavors. This is my take on Indian lamb korma. I’ve reduced the loads cooking oil with a couple of tablespoons of ghee, which add a wonderful depth of flavor. I’ve replaced almonds (which unfortunately I can’t eat 😦 ) with cashew nuts. I usually try to stay away from cream in my recipes, but the light cream in this dish is important. I’m also a fan of garam masala, so I add lots of that too! It all comes together wonderfully in the oven. I like to serve it with an assortment of Indian relishes and chutneys. Hope you’ll give it a try and let me know what you think!

8 cloves garlic, peeled and coarsly chopped
1 inch ginger, peeled and finely grated
2 oz toasted cashews
6 Tbsp plus 8 oz water
2 Tbsp ghee, divided
2 lbs lamb, cut into 1-inch cubes
10 cardamom pods
6 whole cloves
1 (2-inch) piece cinnamon stick
1 large onion, peeled and finely diced
1 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp salt
10 oz light cream
1/2 tsp garam masala

Preaheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Place garlic, ginger, cashews and 6 Tbsp water into a food processor. Process to a very fine paste.

In a large Dutch oven, heat 1 Tbsp of the ghee over high heat. Add lamb and brown, about 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add another 1 Tbsp ghee. Cook liquid down, about 1 minute. Add cardamom pods, cloves and cinnamon stick and stir 30 seconds. Add onions and cook 5 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium. Add garlic paste, coriander, cumin and cayenne. Stir-fry for about 3 minutes. Add back meat and its juices. Stir in cream and the rest of the water (8 oz). Increase heat to high. Stir and bring to a boil. Deglaze pan. Cover, place in oven and bake 1 hour. Remove from oven and stir in garam masala. Season with additional salt, if desired. Serve with cumin-scented rice with peas.

Serves 4.

Cumin-Scented Rice with Peas

Rice_with_Peas (1 of 1)This flavorful rice dish can be eaten on its own with some naan or chapati as a light meal, or it can be served as part of an Indian meal. What make this great for me (aside of course, from the cumin!}, is the ghee (clarified butter). I’ve made clarified butter by cooking out the milk solids, and have used that in Indian cooking, but it is never the same as store-bought ghee. Ghee is what makes this rice dish Indian (to me, at least). For a few years now, I’ve made sure that I have it on-hand in the pantry — it seems to keep for quite a while!. Anyway, please give this dish a try, and let me know what you think. I made it this past weekend with lamb korma, another delicious recipe for which I’ll be blogging about soon!

15 oz long-grain rice
6 cups water, divided
1 Tbsp ghee
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 small onion, finely diced
1 cup fresh or frozen peas
1 tsp salt

Rinse rice well in cold water, changing the water until it is no longer cloudy.

Place rice and 4 cups cold water in a medium bowl and let stand 30 minutes; drain.

Meanwhile, heat ghee in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and stir for a few seconds. Add onions and sauté 8 minutes, or until onions begin to brown. Stir in peas, rice and salt. Stir-fry for about 4 minutes. Stir in 2 cups cold water, turn heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to very low, cover and simmer for 25 minutes. Remove from heat and fluff rice with a fork. Cover, and let stand for at least 5 minutes. Serve as a component of an Indian meal.

Serves 6

Red Lentil Soup with Aromatic Spices

Red_Lentil_Soup (1 of 1)Last evening was blustery and cold here in New England. We even had some snow — it was the perfect night for this delicious version of red lentil soup! Red lentil soup seems to have various versions around the world, each with its unique variety of spices. The star of this international version is the spice, fenugreek, which has a wonderfully distinctive sweet smell that is similar to maple syrup. In fact, if you can’t find fenugreek (but please try!), you can substitute it in this recipe by omitting the sugar and adding 1 tsp maple sugar. The simmering of this soup melds the flavor of the fenugreek very nicely with the other spices in the dish — I hope you’ll try it tonight!

2 Tbsp olive oil
1 large yellow onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely grated or minced
1 red Thai chili, minced
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp coriander seeds
1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp ground fenugreek
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 Tbsp tomato paste
1 cup red lentils
7 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp chopped parsley
Crusty bread

Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Stir in yellow onion, garlic, chili, cumin and coriander seeds. Sauté 4 minutes. Stir in carrots and cook another 3 minutes. Stir in fenugreek, sugar, tomato paste, red lentils and chicken stock. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 40 minutes with lid ajar. Stir occasionally while simmering.

Remove soup from heat. Add lemon juice and adjust seasoning (I added another 1 tsp or so of salt, which seemed about right). Ladle soup into serving bowls and garnish with red onion and parsley. Serve with crusty bread.

Serves 6.

Indian Beef Stew (Rogan Josh)

Rogan_Josh2 (1 of 1) Last night was snowy and cold once again here in New England — a perfect evening for Rogan Josh! This Indian stew is commonly made with lamb, but I decided to make it with beef, since the roads were bad and this is what I had on-hand in the freezer. Beef works well. The aroma from the wonderful spices in this dish made the whole house smell great as it was braising in the oven. Whether it’s cold or not where you are, I think you’ll like this dish, so please try it tonight!

2 inches ginger, peeled and finely grated
8 cloves garlic, peeled
4 Tbsp plus 15 oz water
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 lbs beef chuck, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
10 cardamom pods
2 bay leaves
6 cloves
10 black peppercorns
1 cinnamon stick, about 2 inches
1 large onion, peeled and finely diced
1 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
1 1/4 tsp salt
6 Tbsp plain yogurt
1/4 tsp garam masala
Ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Add ginger, garlic and 4 Tbsp water to a blender. Blend into a paste.

Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add meat and stir until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add another Tbsp oil to the same pan. Add the cardamom pods, bay leaves, cloves, peppercorns and cinnamon. Stir until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Add the onions and cook until they start to turn brown, about 5 minutes. Add the ginger paste and stir 30 seconds. Add the coriander, cumin, paprika, cayenne and salt and stir another 30 seconds. Add back the meat with its juices. Add the yogurt 1 Tbsp at a time, stirring well after each. Cook mixture about 3 minutes.

Add 15 oz water to the pan. Bring to a boil, stirring to deglaze. Cover, place in oven and cook for 2 hours. Remove from oven and stir in garam masala. Season with additional salt and ground black pepper, if desired. Serve with steamed long-grain or basmati rice, as well as an assortment of relishes, chutneys and naan.

Serves 4.