I have tried to make a really good Indian curry with fresh spices so many times without really achieving that authentic flavour that you get from a really good restaurant. This is a Rick Stein inspired recipe that really works, and has to be tried.
3-4 Chicken fillets, deboned, skinned, and cubed (or 8 chicken thighs)
200 ml Yoghurt
2 Red Onions, large, and finely sliced
5 cm Fresh root ginger
2-3 Green chillies
6 Garlic cloves
4 Cardamom pods
1 tbs Turmeric
1 tbs Garam Marsala
1 Red pepper, coarsely diced
20g Fresh coriander
5 tbs Sunflower oil
Salt and black pepper
Preparation and cooking
First dice the chicken breast or thighs into 5cm chunks and place in a bowl with the yoghurt, and leave for at least 1 hour.
When you are ready to start cooking, heat the oil over a high heat in a wok or large frying pan until the oil begins to shimmer. Add the finely sliced red onions and cook for at least 8-10 minutes, so that they begin to brown at the edges.
Meanwhile, add the peeled ginger, peeled garlic cloves, and topped chillies to a food processor, and blitz until finely chopped. Split open the cardamom pods exposing the black seeds and add the seeds to the ginger mix, discarding the cardamom shells. Add this mix to the onions and stir into the oil and cook for 2-3 minutes. Next, stir in the garam marsala, turmeric and a good seasoning of salt and black pepper, and cook for a further 2 minutes.
Now add red pepper and the chicken and yoghurt mixture to the frying pan, and coat in all the spices. Cover the pan, turn down the heat to medium to low, and cook gently for 20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked. You can add a small amount of water if the mixture becomes too dry.
Remove from the heat, and finely chop the fresh coriander, adding half stirred into the mixture, and the other half to garnish on top. Serve immediately with plain basmati rice or pilaf rice.