It’s funny. As I amble through life, I love meeting people who have an equally unhealthy obsession with edible goodness as I do. This dish definitely unpacked a common passion for food between an old work friend and myself. We often discussed different foods, restaurants and home recipes to get us through the long work days. Her Indian culinary legacy offers a very similar dish to this. We call them different things… but that’s what’s so great about swapping dishes – learning about other cultural fare.
This dish from my childhood is a sharp twist on your average chicken curry. It’s packed with a tart, spicy, salty flavour and great served with sweet coconut rice.
8 Chicken thighs or legs (skin on is preferable)
1 tbsp Garam Masala
1 tbsp Cumin
1/2 tbsp Tumeric
Fresh ginger, grated (1 inch)
3 cloves garlic, finely sliced
1 large onion, finely sliced
Salt and pepper
400g natural yoghurt
(Enough to serve about 4 four)
In a large pan with a minimal amount of oil, start to fry the chicken skin side down first. The pan needs to be roomy enough for you to turn the pieces easily. Fry until golden and crispy and then turn and repeat on the other side. If you want extra crispiness, then coat the chicken in a bit of flour before placing in the pan.
Remove the chicken and set aside.
Add the onions, garlic and ginger together in the same large pan. Fry until soft, before adding the ground cumin and garam masala and turmeric. Add half a cup of water to just to deglaze the pan, put the chicken back and make sure the pieces are cooked through.
Lay the baby spinach over the chicken, cover with a lid and allow to wilt in the steam for a minute. Remove the lid and stir in yoghurt just until it has taken on the colour of the turmeric.
Garnish with coriander and crispy fried onion slices. Serve with coconut infused rice. For an accompaniment, I also grilled some aubergines coated in oyster sauce, sunflower oil and minced garlic until soft.