I've been in a warm, saucy food kind of mood these days. I know, I know - it's SUMMER. But, you guys, I was made for Fall. As my friend Nicolle said to me last week: "Becca, you're a walking advertisement for the season." I think it's the hair...but she's not wrong. Bring on the warm colors, the flannels, cute booties and all those awesome Autumn flavors. Mmmm. But not Pumpkin Spice - sorry, everyone. It's not my jam.
When I think of really good saucy meals, I think of Indian food. Chicken Tikka is typically my go-to, but I had a hankering for another curry dish: Chicken Korma. Similar, but different. All those awesome spices and just a titch of serrano. Oh, DAYUM. Delicious.
I also jazzed-up my jasmine rice with a few dashes of cumin, turmeric and paprika. The flavor was subtle but delicious.
Bonus: I made naan this time. Store-bought naan is okay, but nothing beats the stuff made from scratch. I cannot claim the naan as my own. Check out this awesome recipe by Jenn Segal at Once Upon a Chef. This recipe is so easy - don't be afraid to make your own!
Prep Time: 3 hours (includes marinade time)
Cooking Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 4 hours
Chicken Korma Marinade:
2lbs chicken breast, chopped into bite-sized pieces
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup cashews
1/4 cup slivered almonds
3 Tbsp red curry paste
1 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced
1 Tbsp garam masala
1 Tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp red pepper flake
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
salt + pepper
1/2 sweet onion, minced
1 serrano pepper, seeds removed and minced
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
1 cup coconut milk
1/4 cup olive oil
For serving: rice, cilantro, naan
Two hours prior to cooking, make the korma marinade for the chicken. Place yogurt, nuts, red curry paste, ginger and all spices into a food processor and blend until smooth. The mixture will look and feel like a thick paste so to thin it out slowly add water. I added about 1/3-1/2 cup water, SLOWLY. Don't add the water all at once as you don't want this to be runny, just lose enough to coat the chicken well. Once you have a texture you're happy with, season with salt and pepper.
Place chopped chicken into a large mixing bowl and add korma marinade. Mix together so that the chicken is thoroughly coated. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge for at least two hours, or until you're ready to cook.
While the chicken is marinading, make the naan. Jen Segal's recipe can be found here.
When you're ready to make the korma, minced the onion, serrano pepper and 2-3 Tbsp of water in a food processor until the mixture is smooth. The water helps accomplish a smooth texture.
Heat a large pot over medium-high heat and add oil. When oil shimmers add the onion/serrano mixture to the pot. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the water has reduced. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes.
Add the chicken along with ALL the marinade and 1/2 cup of the chicken/vegetable stock. Mix together and bring to a simmer. Slowly add the additional stock until the texture has loosened. Cook for about 10 minutes.
Add the coconut milk and stir to thoroughly combine. Bring the mixture to a simmer again, cover and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes. You want the liquid to reduce slightly so that you have a slightly thickened sauce.
Confession: I added too much of the chicken stock (fail!) so I had to use a little cornstarch + water mixture to thicken it. If you think the sauce is too thin, it's okay to cheat and add cornstarch! No one will know!
While the sauce is cooking, make the rice per the instructions on the packaging. For a little a color and hint of flavor, I added a few dashes of cumin, turmeric and paprika to my rice - it was G.O.OD.
Serve sauce over rice, top it with cilantro and dip that naan in all that saucy goodness!