My family isn’t the only one with favourite recipes and crowd palette pleasers. This week I am bringing you into my best friend’s family’s home (that introduction was a mouthful). Through the years I have become a part of this incredible family and it is one of my homes away from home. Most of my memories in their home stem from the kitchen; it’s the first room you generally walk into when you visit and the food that comes out of there has been nothing short of delicious!
As children we helped around the kitchen; grating tomatoes, chopping onions and chilies, mixing butter and flour… and anything Norma (my best friend’s mother) would task us to do. Soraya (my best friend) and Feroza (her sister) often experimented in the kitchen. On occasions they almost burnt down the kitchen or burnt the food. I was the poor guinea pig that had to eat what was served from them on those rare occasions. Luckily Norma always came to the rescue with flavourful meals; leaving mostly good memories of the food from their home. Nevertheless, after all those years, we turned out quite alright in the kitchen and became pretty good homely cooks, if I say so myself.
It wasn’t so long ago that Soraya and I were talking about Norma’s lovely meals. One of those tasty dishes mentioned was yoghurt chicken. It just so happened that last week I visited Norma, and to my surprise she had made this very dish. I couldn’t believe my luck, as I had not mentioned it to her beforehand. When she dished me up some to take home, I decided then and there that I had to share this meal with the world. So with Norma’s consensus, here is one of my favourite dishes from the Singh family’s kitchen.
500 g Chicken fillet
½ Tsp Ginger and garlic (crushed)
1 tsp Chili powder
½ Turmeric powder
1 tsp Jeera powder (cumin powder)
125 ml Plain natural yoghurt
2 Small tomatoes
1 Small onion
4 Tsp Ghee
1 Small green pepper
1 pinch of Saffron
2 Tsp Water
Grate the 2 small tomatoes. Dilute the pinch of Saffron into the 2 tablespoons of water. Once you have done that, mix together the crushed ginger and garlic, chili powder, turmeric powder, jeera powder, plain natural yoghurt, juice of half a lemon, grated tomatoes and diluted saffron. Marinate the chicken in this mixture.
Chop the onion and green pepper separately. Set your stove on a medium heat and melt the ghee in a pot. Once the ghee is melted and hot, braise the chopped onion for 15 – 20 minutes, or until golden brown. When the onions have reached this stage, add in the chopped peppers. Soon after the peppers have been added, you then add in the chicken with the marinade sauce.
Leave the pot of chicken on a medium heat for about 45 minutes or until the mixture has thickened and the chicken is cooked. Stir the mixture every so often to ensure the marinade doesn’t catch (or burn) at the bottom. Leave the lid of the pot slightly open to let the steam out and this is a sure way to prevent the mixture from becoming too watery.
Serves 4 – 5