Tuesday, May 17, 2016

A spice paste made of red onions, cumin, ginger, garlic, turmeric and chilis. 

One of my favorite things about Instagram is the beautiful friendships I have established with other cooks. This has resulted in recipes shared from various cultures and my dinner table is now the setting for dishes from all over the world.  It has taken me out of my comfort zone in cooking and introduced me to an exciting new world of spices and curries, the likes of which would have caused my mother to raise her eyebrows in surprise and skepticism.

I had always been intimidated with curry. I felt it was one of those dishes I couldn't replicate in my kitchen.  But thanks to good friends, Asha, of Food Fashion Party and Hazel @beurrenoisette_ I now have an arsenal (ok, a small arsenal) of curry recipes. This newest addition for a curry-in-a-hurry takes under an hour and if you prep the spice paste ahead of time and freeze it in Ziploc bags, you can speed up the process incredibly. ( Thanks for that tip, Hazel.)

Perhaps you're a saavy curry cooker with a well-stocked cupboard of spices, but if not, a trip to your local Indian market will be a good idea.  It may seem overwhelming to see all the choices  of spices and spice mixes, but if you're armed with several recipes a helpful clerk will be able to fill your shopping basket with all the essentials.

So here is my newest love, Garam Masala & Cumin Home-style Chicken Curry, from  @beurrenoisette_ who says that sharing recipes "is what good food is all about." It is, indeed.

Garam Masala & Cumin Home-Style Chicken Curry

Garam Masala & Cumin Home Style Chicken Curry.

1 large red onion, coarsely chopped
8 cloves of garlic, skins removed
1 inch knob of ginger, coarsely chopped
3 Bird's Eye Chillies, coarsely chopped *
1.5 tsp cumin seeds
0.5 tsp ground turmeric
Splash of Water

Coconut Oil, as needed
2 pounds boneless chicken thighs, cubed
1tsp sea salt
2 medium-sized fresh tomatoes, chopped
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 heaping tsp of Garam Masala
1 cup plain chicken stock
A few grinds of black peppercorns
Generous handful of freshly chopped coriander leaves

Using a food processor or blender, add the onions, garlic, ginger, chillies, cumin, turmeric, a splash of water and grind into a smooth paste. Set aside.

Season the chicken cubes with salt. To a pan, add a few tablespoons of oil over medium heat, brown chicken pieces until golden, remove and set aside.

To the same pan, add the ground spice paste and fry over low to medium heat for approximately 3 minutes until the paste is aromatic. Add chopped tomatoes and tomato paste, continue frying to combine evenly. Add chicken pieces, garam masala, continue frying for a further 5 minutes to incorporate the spices and chicken pieces fully. Add chicken stock or water and bring up to a boil, cover the pan and let simmer for 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Garnish generously with freshly chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with steamed Basmati rice or breads.

Hazel's Note:

The bird's eye chillies are quite spicy. Use regular fresno chillies if you want a milder curry. Start with 2 and increase as needed.

Naomi's Note:  *I'm still wimpy with HOT spices so I opted to use one jalapeno, diced, instead of the red hot chilli peppers. In addition, I added 1/2 - 1 teaspoon Kashsmiri red chili powder.


  1. I'm so happy and grateful to have connected with you on Instagram, Naomi! You are so dear to me... Till we meet in person, sharing our recipes will be the closest thing we get to sharing a lil snippet of our daily lives with each other. Thank you for featuring this beloved weeknight curry in hurry dish! I'm doing a lil dance over here.. Happy that you have enjoyed it as much we do!

    1. And you are dear to me, too! I'm eating the teeny bit of leftovers for lunch!

    2. Ooo a curry always taste better the next day! ;)