When I was in Russia, at some point I wanted to try cooking some vegetarian Indian dishes. The recipes in the book were full of mysterious ingredients and words. Those were not just curries and home-made paneer, that was the language of Taj Mahal, Ghanesh and ayurveda Those recipes had thousands of years behind them and the lists of ingredients were intimidating. Reading that book I could almost smell intoxicating garam masala and taste cooling raita.
There was no way I could cook any of that. I didn’t have half of the ingredients. At least. And you cannot substitute Indian ingredients with Russian products. No matter how creative you are. But here in Canada, it is a very different story. Here, in the comfort of your own kitchen you can make this amazing Cashew Chicken Curry.
- 1⁄4 cup unsalted butter
- 2 medium onions, finely chopped (2 cups)
- 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
- 3 tablespoons curry powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1⁄2 teaspoon cayenne
- 3 1⁄2-4lbs chicken, cut into 10 serving pieces
- 1 (14 1/2 ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 3⁄4 cup cashews, roasted (1/4 lb)
- 3⁄4 cup plain yogurt
- Heat butter in a 5- to 6-quart wide heavy pot over moderately low heat until foam subsides, then cook onions, garlic, and ginger, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add curry powder, salt, cumin, and cayenne and cook, stirring, 2 minutes.
- Add chicken and cook, stirring to coat, 3 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, including juice, and cilantro and bring to a simmer, then cover and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through, about 40 minutes.
- Just before serving: pulse cashews in a food processor or electric coffee/spice grinder until very finely ground, then add to curry along with yogurt and simmer gently, uncovered, stirring, until sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes.
You could have guessed by now that I halved the recipe. Although, I still used 2 cloves of garlic, I smashed rather than chopped them. And I didn’t use either cayenne or cilantro. Other than that, this is a very easy and great-tasting recipe that I am very proud of. Martin gave it a solid 5 out of 5. Maya gave it a 3. Recently, she is very stingy with high marks for anything other than pasta and peanut butter.