Monday, 23 January 2012

Chicken Pasanda

This was a recipe from the BBC for Lamb Pasanda, but Mr Debs won't eat lamb.. So, Chicken Pasanda:

500g/17½oz chicken breast
100g/3½oz ghee (clarified butter)
4 cinnamon sticks, each 4cm (1¾in) long
4 black cardamoms (couldn't find these so I omitted them)
200g/7¼oz flour, approx
50ml/1¾fl oz water, or enough to bind into a slack dough

For the marinade:
8 dried figs, soaked in water, to cover
3 tbsp khoya, available from ethnic grocers (couldn't find any so I used dried milk)
1 tbsp raisins, soaked in water, to cover
½ tsp saffron strands, soaked in 3 tbsp warm water
150ml/5¼fl oz plain yoghurt
3 onions, sliced and shallow-fried in oil until golden brown
4cm/1¾in piece of fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
6 garlic cloves
2 tsp salt, or to taste
2 tsp red chilli powder
4 tsp garam masala
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp freshly ground cardamom seeds
1 tbsp chopped coriander, to garnish

1. Using a sharp knife, cut the meat into 5cm (2in) squares, about 1cm (½in) thick.
2. Place these escalopes between sheets of cling film and beat them out with a meat mallet or rolling pin until the Chicken has been flattened into thin pieces.
3. Tip all the marinade ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth.
4. Coat the escalopes with the marinade, making sure the meat is completely covered with the masala spice mix. Set aside for at least one hour.
5. Heat the clarified butter in a heavy-bottomed casserole pan, wide enough to take the meat in one layer.
6. Add the cinnamon sticks and black cardamoms and let them sizzle for a few seconds before adding the marinated meat with its liquid.
7. Cover the pan with a tightly-fitting lid and seal the edges with a flour and water paste (this helps to retain all the flavours in the pot as the meat cooks).
8. Simmer on a very low heat for an hour until the sauce has reduced and the meat is tender.
9. Remove the lid from the pan. If there's too much liquid, cook the sauce down until there's a thin film of oil on top.
10. Scatter with chopped coriander and serve straight away with warm naan bread.

We served this with boiled white rice and naan. I did try and make my own naan, but it was a bit of a disaster. The prep is a bit lengthy but it taste's great and once it's bubbling on the stove, the house smells amazing!

Sam x

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