Friday, January 13, 2012

Coriander Chicken

There are umpteen reasons why you should incorporate coriander or cilantro leaves in your diet. Besides adding a robust flavour to your dish, coriander leaves have some health benefits. Three of them include -
1. It helps in digestion and prevents flatulence.
2. Lowers blood sugar, bad cholesterol and increases good cholesterol.
3. A potent source of minerals and dietary fibers.

I keep adding an array of herbs into my dishes like cilantro, parsleys, curry leaves, lemon grass simply because they always lend an extra zing. The sweet aroma emanating from different herbs just lifts up my mood and whets my appetite.

The below recipe of coriander chicken departs slightly from the traditional ways of making chicken with varieties of spices, onions, tomatoes as integral to the preparation. In fact, in this dish carefully some strong flavoured ingredients have been avoided to retain the sweet fragrance of coriander leaves.

Ingredients:                               Cooking time: 40-45 minutes
ü  1 kg chicken
ü  1 cup of coriander leaves
ü  Few curry leaves (about 15)
ü  5-6 green chillies
ü  2 tbsp of poppy seeds
ü  3/4 cup of cashew nuts
ü  1 tsp ginger paste
ü  1 tsp garlic paste
ü  2 tsp coriander powder
ü  1 tsp cumin powder
ü  A pinch of garam masala powder
ü  1/2 cup of yogurt
ü  1 tsp cumin seeds
ü  Salt to taste
ü  White oil for cooking
1) Grind green chillies, coriander leaves and curry leaves to a fine paste.
2) Grind poppy seeds and cashew nuts together into a smooth paste.
3) Heat oil in a pan. When oil turns smoking hot, add cumin seeds and wait for them to sputter. Add ginger-garlic paste. Sauté.
4) Add poppy seeds and cashew nuts paste. Stir in and add coriander powder. Sauté on medium flame.
5) Now add the coriander leaves paste. Sauté for 5-10 minutes.
6) Add chicken, yogurt and salt one after another. Cook covered till chicken is cooked through completely. Just before taking the chicken off the flame, sprinkle a pinch of garam masala on top.
(Please note that once chicken is added to the curry, if you add water for gravy, add only 'hot' water.)
7) Serve hot with rice or pulao.

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