Cream sauces. I could drink them out of giant mugs. That's my kinda cup-o-soup. My kinda comfort.
Even though the cream sauce in Madhur Jaffrey's Chicken Breasts Baked with Green Chilies and Onion doesn't getting billing in the title, I'd ladle it into the biggest mug I could find.
I'm not saying I licked my plate. But fingers were swiped across it. And they were licked.
In private, of course. I know how to be respectable.
Seriously. This was insane. So many flavors coming together in just the right way. The ingredient list looks long. There are a lot of spices going into the pan. But that's what makes it so damn good.
Good enough for company. Good enough to make it to my top 5 Madhur Jaffrey recipes.
There are several steps and if there was ever a time for mise en place this is exactly that time. Sounds fussy, but it earns the right to be as fussy as it wants.
Visit I Heart Cooking Clubs for more Comfort Food from Madhur Jaffrey
This recipe calls for 2 Tbsp of tomato paste. If you don't buy your tomato paste in those squeezy tubes, it's kind of a pain to deal with the rest of a can. Scoop it out by tablespoons onto a waxed paper lined small cookie sheet (or directly onto a small cookie sheet). Pop in the freezer until frozen. Remove from the waxed paper or pan and store in a freezer bag. No waste and now any time you need some silly amount like 1 Tbsp or 2, you have a stash.
Chicken Breasts Baked with Green Chilies and Onion
from Quick & Easy Indian Cooking by Madhur Jaffrey
For the sauce
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp garam masala
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/8-1/4 cayenne pepper
1 cup cream
For the curry
4 boned, skinned chicken breasts
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 Tbsp vegetable oil
2" piece cinnamon stick
6 cardamom pods, cracked open
1 medium onion, cut into fine half-rings
1" piece fresh root ginger, peeled and cut into fine slices, then into fine strips
1-3 hot green chilies, cut at a diagonal into fine strips, do not remove the seeds
½ tsp black or yellow mustard seeds
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
cooked basmati rice, to serve
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Put the tomato paste in a bowl, add one tablespoon of water, and mix. Add all the remaining sauce ingredients, in the order listed, mixing as you go.
Salt and pepper the chicken pieces generously on both sides.
Put three tablespoons of the oil in a non-stick frying pan and set over a high heat. When hot, put in the cinnamon, cracked cardamom pods and cloves. Ten seconds later, put the chicken pieces in a single layer and brown them lightly on both sides. Remove with a slotted spoon and place in an ovenproof dish in a single layer.
Add the onions, ginger, and green chilies into the oil that remains in the frying pan. Stir and fry them until they are light brown in color. Remove with a slotted spoon and spread evenly over the chicken pieces.
Add the last tablespoon of oil to the pan and let it heat. Put in the mustard seeds. As soon as they pop - just seconds - put in garlic and stir. As soon as it starts to brown, pour in the sauce. As soon as the sauce heats up and starts bubbling, pour it over and around the chicken without displacing the onions. Place the dish in oven, uncovered, and bake for 25 minutes. Remove and discard the cinnamon stick, cardamom pods, and whole cloves. Serve immediately.