The husband has a common complain these days.. I cook mainly for the blog! He gets to eat all the food that is prepared in my tiny kitchen and yet, the complaints 🙂 I am sure most of you are smiling and nodding as you might be in the same situation.
Honestly, I can’t blame him completely for this.
Last few months, I have been experimenting a little too much with new ingredients and the husband’s requests were getting neglected! So, one fine evening I decided to surprise him with his favorite Achari Murg and Naan for dinner. Turns out, my recent habit to tweet everything I cook or eat spoiled all the surprise factor .. silly me!
Anyways, the main point is that he loved it and there was no complain for a while. This dish was not really for the blog but how could I not share our favorite chicken curry with you all.. right ? 😉
In India, pickles or achar are commonly enjoyed in everyday meal. It’s made with different variety of vegetables, fruits and at times, with fish. The vegetables or fruits are partially cooked in the spice mix. Then, they are dipped in oil and left for resting in an airtight jar for few weeks. This allows the spice mix to combine nicely and enhance the flavor even before you can enjoy the first bite. There are no artificial chemicals added in the pickling jar. It’s the salt and oil in the pickle that works as a perfect preservative for months.
Achari Murg is a famous North Indian dish made with a similar pickling spice mix. It’s rich in flavor, not too hot and gives a tangy spice kick which can lift up your mood instantly.
The key ingredients for the dish are the spices that are used to prepare the pickling spice mix. Dry roasting these whole spices individually is very important as they have different textures and sizes. You have to roast them until they are slightly darker in shade and start releasing a hearty warm aroma.
This is one of those few chicken recipes where I do not marinate the chicken overnight and it gets cooked pretty quickly. If you don’t like meat, you can give it a try with paneer or cauliflower and it will taste equally delicious.
We enjoyed every bit of the curry and the meat with some hot buttery naan and the husband slept happily without any complaints 🙂
- 1-1/2 lb chicken pieces, bone or boneless
- 2 large onions, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, grated
- 1 " ginger, grated
- 1 cup yogurt
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- juice and zest of 1 lemon
- 1 to mato, pureed
- 3 green chilies
- chopped cilantro for garnish
For the pickling sauce
- 4 dry red chilies
- 1 tsp fenugreek
- 1/2 tsp nigella
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 " cinnamon stick
- 3 clove
- Dry roast all the ingredients for pickling sauce individually until they change the color to a darker shade and start releasing aroma.
- Cool them and grate to a fine dust.
- In a bowl, squeeze the lemon juice, add the lemon zest and the pickling sauce powder.
- Slit 3 green chilies and add it to the bowl. Mix it well and let it rest for about 20 minutes.
- In a hot pan, add 2 tbs oil and saute garlic, ginger and onion.
- Season it with salt. Then, add the turmeric powder and fry until the onion get golden brown in color.
- Once done, cool it for while and blend it to a fine paste.
- Pour it back in the pan and add the chicken pieces. Bring the heat to low and keep cooking for about 10 minutes.
- Next, add the pickling sauce, tomato puree and yogurt and continue cooking in low heat for another 10 minutes.
- If the chicken is not cooked through, add some water and continue cooking till the chicken is properly cooked.
- Taste for salt and add if required.
- Garnish it with fresh chopped cilantro and serve with hot rice or naan.