Coconut Chicken with Cashews Print Email

1 cup raw or roasted cashews
1/4 cups roasted cashews for serving
4 wholes dried red chiles
1 cinnamon stick 1 inch piece
6 wholes cloves
3 TBS coriander seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 medium onion, coarsly chopped
8 cloves of garlic
1 2 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut, or 1/4 cup raw or roasted cashews
1/3 cups canola oil
1 tsp ground black pepper
2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut crosswise into thirds
2 cups water
1 tsp salt, or to taste

Process 1 cup of the raw cashews to a powder in a food processor.

Combine the chiles, cinnamon stick, cloves, coriander, cumin, onion, garlic, coconut and ¾ cup of the ground cashews in a large saucepan or casserole over low heat. Cook, stirring until the cashews and coconut have turned light golden, about 10 minutes. Cool and process to a paste in a food processor.

Wipe out the casserole and put it over medium heat. Add the oil, the spice paste, and the black pepper, and cook, stirring until the mixture turns deep golden brown about 10 minutes. Keep a cup of water beside the stove as the mixture cooks. As the spices begin to stick add water, about 1 teaspoon at t time, and scrape the bottom of the pan with the spoon to pull up the browned bits and keep the spices from burning.

Add the remaining ground cashews and cook, stirring, 5 more minutes. Add the chicken and cook, stirring, until it turns opaque, about 5 minutes.

Add the water and the salt, bring to a boil, turn the heat down, and simmer, partially covered, until the chicken is tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Taste for salt and sprinkle with the remaining ¼ cup roasted cashews.

Serve hot with rice and pita.

Serves: 4

Source: Indian Home Cooking, Suvir Saran and Stephanie Lyness, Clarkson Potter Publishers

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