Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Thrifty Recipe- Madras Chicken Curry in a Hurry

We have had a slight obsession with Indian food ever since our best friends took us to Panna II restaurant in NYC five or so years ago. However, going out for Indian food every time we have a craving could get expensive! This recipe is a staple in our house. Serve it with some white or brown rice, plain yogurt, and maybe a salad of tomatoes and cucumbers. You could also replace the chicken with four hard-boiled eggs. Cut them into quarters and add at the very end. Don't let the number of spices scare you, it is not too spicy, and feel free to eliminate the cayenne if you want to make it milder.

Madras Chicken Curry in a Hurry
From Healthy South Indian Cooking page 230
As usual, I have made some small edits based on experience with the recipe. Serves 2 for dinner with 2 servings left over for lunches. Make sure you make extra rice to go with the leftovers.

Ingredients (best to prep/chop all ingredients before you start):
  • 5 tablespoons canola oil (vegetable oil works well too)
  • 3 dry bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 1 cup chopped onion (one small white onion)
  • 1 cup chopped tomato (I usually buy a couple romas or whatever is cheapest, it's going to be cooked so it doesn't have to be perfect)
  • 1/4 cup peeled and quartered garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger root (this is sold with the vegetables, usually near the jalapenos. Just break off a one-inch piece and buy that. To mince, peel the skin off and grate with small grater or mince with a knife)
  • 3 pounds skinned chicken pieces with bones- about 6 to 8 pieces (Instead, I usually use boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into chunks, it cooks a lot faster and is easier to eat. But you could use chicken thighs, legs, whatever is on sale)
  • 1/4 teaspoon tumeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder or garam masala powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 cup tomato sauce

1. In heavy saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. When oil is hot, but not smoking, add bay leaves and cinnamon stick.
2. Add onion, tomato, garlic, and ginger root. Stir fry for a few minutes, until onion begins to soften a bit.
3. Add chicken and cook until browned.
4. Add tumeric, cayenne, curry powder, cumin. Sprinkle them right onto the chicken to ensure the chicken gets lots of flavor.
5. Add tomato sauce and slow cook over medium low heat until chicken is cooked.



  1. Sounds very yummy :)
    Seems like a perfect choice when you have the single guys (Mike & I) over for dinner this summer!!

  2. @Nico, sounds like a plan, but might be too exotic for Mike...

  3. Update - April cooked this for me this past Thursday and it was AMAZING! I highly recommend trying it... or even better, get yourself invited to April's (like I did) and have the master chef cook it for you directly ;)


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