Goan Chicken Vindaloo

Once again, for the third time in as many months, I have a cold! It’s annoying me greatly. I’ve been overdosing on vitamin C all day in an attempt to stave off the worst of it and for dinner I wanted something to get the blood racing – healing food with lots of ginger and garlic normally do the trick and a bit of spice never did anyone any harm. So this Goan vindaloo was a real knockout. Lovely, sweet and spicy in flavour with a vibrant and inviting glossy gravy. It really cheered me up if nothing else – which is half the battle when you’re feeling a little sorry for yourself. The good thing too, is that this curry is pretty easy to make – something I was pretty glad of today. More time left for the sofa in front of trashy TV wrapped in a duvet.

For the spice paste:

1 teaspoon chilli powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder
3 garlic cloves (chopped)
3cm piece ginger (chopped)

Other Ingredients:
6 small potatoes (peeled and halved)
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large onions (finely diced)
1kg chicken thighs (cut into chunks)
6 cloves
6 cardamom pods
6 black peppercorns
1 large tomato (finely diced)
1 stem fresh curry leaves
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
4 tablespoons cider vinegar

To make the spice paste: Grind together in a pestle and mortar all the spice paste ingredients into a thick smooth paste. Set aside.

Heat the oil in a large deep non-stick frying pan or wok. Fry the potatoes for 5-6 minutes until browned. Remove from the pan then quickly add the onions and stir well. Simmer gently for 5 minutes then add the chicken and turn up the heat. Let the chicken, cloves, cardamom, peppercorns and fry for 5 minutes till the pan is nice and hot. Add the spice paste and stir for 1 minute then add the tomatoes, curry leaves, salt, sugar and 125 ml water, reduce the heat slightly and let it simmer moderately for 7-8 minutes to reduce. Add a further 200ml of water and reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer gently for 10 minutes stirring occasionally. Return the potatoes to the pan and simmer for a further 20 minutes until they are cooked through. Remove from the heat then finally, add the vinegar and let the curry sit for 10 minutes with a lid on before serving.

Serve with lots of fluffy basmati rice. I tarted my rice up a little by adding a little dried turmeric to the water to give a vibrant yellow rice.

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