22/11/2009

Chicken Curry for the Crockpot

Slow cooked chicken curry
chicken curry for the crockpot or slow cooker
Makes about 8-12 servings depending on appetite:

Ingredients:
1.2 - 1.5 kg boneless, skinless chicken thighs (US: 2 1/2-3 pounds)
150-175g cooked or canned chickpeas (US: 1 cup), optional
3 medium onions
6 large garlic cloves
400-450g mushrooms (US: 1 pound)
2 tblsp olive oil
seeds from 3 opened cardamom pods
1 tblsp cumin seeds
small stick of cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1-2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cayenne pepper OR chilli powder (or more, if you want it hotter)
1 tblsp garam masala
1 sachet coconut cream or about 100-125ml coconut milk or yogurt (US: 1/2 cup)

Note: you will need a medium or large crockpot or slow cooker for this recipe. If you only have a small one, you will need to halve the amounts of the ingredients.

Method:
In a large saucepan or frying pan, heat the oil gently, then brown the chicken pieces, a few at a time, turning so that all sides brown - they won't be cooked through, just lightly browned. Remove with a slotted spoon when done, and place in the crockpot, then continue with more pieces.

While the chicken is cooking, peel and finely chop the onions; peel and mince the garlic; wash and slice the mushrooms.

When all the chicken is in the crockpot, add a little more oil if needed. Put the cardamom and cumin seeds in the pan with the cinnamon stick; cook, stirring, for about a minute. Add the chopped onions, mushrooms and garlic, and fry, stirring, until the onions are golden. Add the rest of the spices and chickpeas if used, cook for about 15 seconds, then stir in the coconut cream or yogurt.

Mix thoroughly, turn off the heat, and pour the mixture over the chicken pieces in the crockpot. It looks as if it will be quite dry, but actually creates quite a bit of liquid as it cooks.

I cook for about an hour on HIGH, to ensure the chicken is thoroughly cooked, and then about six to eight hours on LOW. But cooking times depend on your crockpot, and are flexible.


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

This recipe is based on the 'Authentic chicken curry' recipe at the Cooks.com site. The first time I made it, I followed their directions fairly closely (other than using chicken pieces instead of a whole chicken, olive oil instead of corn oil, and more garlic than the recipe suggested).

I thought the initial recommendation of blending the yogurt, garlic and onions in a liquidiser was messy and didn't really work well. We liked the resultant curry, but thought the cloves gave too strong a flavour which didn't quite work for our British tastebuds. We also thought the spices could have been stronger, and the whole was too meaty. Using some chick-peas gives more of a balance.

So the second time I made the recipe as above, other than forgetting the mushrooms, and it worked well. It would have been better still with the mushrooms!

We serve it with pitta bread or naan, mango chutney, chopped tomatoes and cucumbers, with raisins, sunflower seeds and dessicated coconut to sprinkle over.

1 comment:

Little Island In The Med said...

Just found your blog, looks like there's going to be lots of inspiration here. My husband is the family cook and loves to try new things, so I have started following your blog.