Rich, creamy and with a mild-medium heat, this is a good saucy curry, which reheats beautifully, so make a day ahead if it helps.
Kashmiri Chicken Curry
- 6 cardamom pods
- 4 tbsp cold pressed rapeseed oil
- 4 medius onions, halved and thinly sliced
- 8 garlic cloves
- 75g piece of fresh root ginger, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp ground cumin
- 2 tbsp ground coriander
- 1.5 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 tbsp kashmiri chilli powder
- 75g ground almonds
- 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
- 400ml cold water
- 2 tsp caster sugar
- 2 tsp flaked salt
- 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
- 18 boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 150ml double cream
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp toasted flaked almonds
- Freshly chopped coriander
Lightly crush the cardamom pods in a pestle and mortar, then tip them onto a board and split them open. Remove the seeds and chuck out the husks, then put the cardamom seeds back into the pestle and mortar and pound them to a powder. Set aside
Melt the ghee (or oil) in a large non-stick pan and add the onions, garlic and ginger. Cover and cook over a low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally until very soft. Remove the lid and cook the onions over a high heat for 6-8 minutes, stirring constantly until they are nicely browned. Don’t allow the onion mixture to burn.
Stir the cardamom, cumin, coriander, turmeric and kashmiri chilli powder into the pan with the onions and cook the spices for 2 minutes stirring constantly. Stir in the almonds, tomatoes, water, sugar, salt, then bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 10 minutes, stirriing regularly. Remove the pan from the heat and blitz the sauce with a stick blender until smooth. Set aside.
Trim the chicken thighs of any obvious fatty bits. Cut the thighs in half and season with salt and lots of black pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil on a very large flameproof casserole dish and fry the chicken in batches over a medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes until lightly coloured on all sides. Put the first batch in a mixing bowl while you fry the second lot. Add little more oil between the batches if you need to.
Put the first batch of chicken and any resting juices back into the casserole dish with the rest of the chicken and add the pureed onion mixture over the top. Add the bay leaves and connamon stick. Cover the dish loosely with a lis and bring to a gentle simmer, then cook for 25 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the cream, stir well and return to a simmer, uncovered. Cook for 5 minutes more until the chicken is tender, stirring regularly. Garnish with toasted flaked almonds and some roughly chopeed coriander if you like.