Mint n’ Chicken ( with a Bong twist)
The winter storms are becoming a rage here in this part of the globe, wind chills below zero have become a common phenomenon, yet in-between all these forces of nature the human psyche can find its own place of comfort in a well cooked home meal .Its amazing how your thoughts can take you in all directions when food is concerned on a cold wintery day, mine just landed on the East coast of India,the Bengali cuisine known for its subtle yet fiery flavors…wanting something green in my food( since Spring is still a few months away!) I decided to try this Minty chicken curry, the Bengali way.
Bengali’s( Bong’s as they are fondly called) are passionate about many things, be it Tagore’s poetry, football, movies yet you can be certain than any conversation starts and ends with food, such is their passion in creating wonderful flavors blending the spices in the pantry, so here I am creating one such recipe along the same lines.
1.Chicken- 6-8 thigh pieces (chopped to your taste)
2.Ginger garlic paste- 2 tbsp
3.Thick Yogurt- 3 tbsp
4.Black Pepper powder- 1 tsp
5.Salt- to taste
For grinding into a paste:
1.Mint leaves- a bunch
2.Cilantro- a bunch
3.Green chillies- 5-6
4.Ginger root- 1′
5.Garlic pods- 3-4
1.Turmeric powder- 1/2 tsp
2.Red chili powder- 1 tbsp
3.Green Cardamom – 3-4
4.Garam masala powder- 1 tsp
6.Bay leaves- 1-2
7.Onion- 1 big ( finely sliced)
8.Tomato- 1 (cubed)
10.Coconut milk- 1 tin
1.In a wok, heat some oil, then add the cardamom, cinnamon & bay leaves & fry for a few minutes then add & sauté the onions till they turn light brown.
2.To this add the marinated chicken (which has been marinated for half an hour or more, after mixing all the ingredients thoroughly)
3.Let it cook for a few minutes, then pour the ground paste into it & stir well till all the chicken pieces are coated well. Add the turmeric powder, Red chili & garam masala powder at this point.Then add a tin of coconut milk & stir it well together & cover & cook with the lid on.
4.When the chicken is 3/4 cooked add the tomato slices& let it cook for 10 minutes, adding additional salt if necessary. ( Bengalis like a sweet flavor in their curries, so at this point they add a spoon or two of sugar as well, I skipped that part)
5.When the aroma floats in your kitchen, staying suspended in the cold winter air , you know your dish is ready to be served with any flat breads or rice.Just the right spices to warm your toes on a cold wintery day with that fresh minty flavor.Enjoy.