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Nive Burris | Pedernales EC

This dish comes together quickly and infuses simple, sautéed chicken with fragrant spices and a rich tomato gravy.

1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1/4 cup vegetable oil, divided use
1 medium onion, chopped
1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes
2 cloves garlic
1 jalapeño or serrano chile, stemmed and chopped, optional
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2 teaspoons pepper
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
Salt, to taste

1. Cut the chicken thighs into cubes.

2. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sauté until it is softened and translucent, about 3–4 minutes. Transfer the sautéed onion to a blender and add the tomatoes and garlic; purée until smooth.

3. In the same skillet, heat the remaining oil over medium heat and then add the cubed chicken. Cook, stirring, 5–7 minutes, until cooked through. Season the chicken with the fresh chile, cumin, coriander, pepper and turmeric and cook an additional 2–3 minutes.

4. Pour the tomato purée over the chicken and simmer at medium-low heat 15 minutes. Watch the gravy as it begins to thicken, stirring as needed so it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan, and cook another 10–15 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and stir in the cilantro. Serve warm with steamed rice or naan.

Serves 4.

Cook’s Tip

For added aroma and depth of flavor, Burris suggests adding dried mint to the mix of seasonings or substituting dried fenugreek leaves (available at international groceries) for the fresh cilantro. For a smokier aroma, use fire-roasted canned tomatoes.

March 2019 Recipe Contest