Serves 4 Prep 30 mins plus overnight marinating Cook 1 hr 15 mins 750g boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
FOR THE MARINADE
150g natural yogurt juice of 1 freshly squeezed lemon 1 tsp garlic, grated 1 tsp ginger, grated 1 tsp tomato paste 2 tbsp tamarind pulp
THE KEY SPICES
1 tsp cumin seeds 1 tsp coriander seeds 1 tsp mustard seeds 1 inch piece cassia bark (available at
souschef.co.uk) 1 bay leaf ¼ tsp turmeric powder 1 tsp red chilli flakes
THE WARMING SPICES
1 tsp fenugreek leaves, soaked in 2 tbsp
hot water 4 green cardamoms, lightly bashed 2 cloves
THE WET INGREDIENTS
4 tbsp vegetable oil 2 medium onions, finely chopped 400g good quality tinned tomatoes 1 tsp grated jaggery (ocado.com) 1 tsp garlic, grated 1 tsp ginger, grated 2- 4 fresh finger green chillies, pierced 6-8 curry leaves, ripped 140ml water 2 tsp tamarind pulp
FOR THE GARNISH
small bunch of fresh coriander, chopped zest of 1 lemon
1 Place the chicken thighs in a large bowl, add the marinade ingredients, stir and coat well. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge overnight. Remove from the fridge and allow the chicken to come to room temperature.
2 Take a small dry frying pan, set on a low heat and warm through the cumin, coriander and mustard seeds. This should only take 1 min. Remove from the heat, add to a pestle and mortar and grind coarsely.
3 Take a large sauté pan, add the oil and warm on a low heat then add the onions, cassia bark and bay leaf. Sauté for 5 mins. Add the turmeric and red chilli flakes, stir and cook for a further 2 mins. Add the tomatoes and jaggery and continue to sauté for a further 10 mins, stirring occasionally.
4 Now add the garlic, ginger and green chillies and continue to cook for 2 mins. Add the contents of the pestle and mortar, stir well and continue to fry until the mixture resembles a paste and the oil starts to separate from the onions and tomatoes. If the ingredients start to become a little dry or the spices start to burn, add a little water.
5 Add the marinated chicken pieces and fresh curry leaves. Turn the heat up to medium, stir really well and allow the chicken to seal for at least 5 mins, stirring frequently. Add the water and bring to the boil then immediately reduce to a simmer.
6 Add the fenugreek leaves, cardamom, cloves and tamarind. Add the lid. Cook for 25 mins until thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in the coriander and zest. Leave for 5 mins, then serve with chapattis or rice.
By cooking ingredients for longer, your curry will taste much better