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Spiced Indian chicken in yogurt braise

A dish full of warming spices. This is great served over rice.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup neutral oil, like grapeseed or corn
  • 1 whole chicken, 3 to 4 pounds, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 8 pieces, or any combination of parts, such as thighs and wings
  • 1 large or 2 medium onions, sliced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon chopped or grated fresh ginger or
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups yogurt
  • Chopped fresh cilantro leaves for garnish

Procedure

Put the oil in a deep skillet with a lid or a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Season the chicken on all sides with salt and pepper. When hot, add the chicken, skin side down, and brown it well, rotating and turning the pieces as necessary, about 4 to 5 minutes per side

When the chicken is nicely browned, remove it from the skillet and turn the heat down to medium. Pour or spoon off all but two tablespoons of the oil. Stir in the onions, along with some salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until the onions soften, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and spices, along with 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Cook with the onions, stirring, until very aromatic, 2 or 3 minutes. Stir in the yogurt, then return the chicken pieces to the pan.

Cover and cook over medium-low heat so that the mixture doesn’t boil, turning the pieces every 5 minutes or so, until the chicken is cooked through, about 20 minutes. The mixture may curdle slightly and that’s okay. The chicken is done when an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 160°F. Taste and adjust the seasoning, garnish with cilantro, and serve.

Adapted from an How to Cook Everything recipe by Mark Bittman

 

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