Easy Butter Chicken

What do you do when you are craving indian food, and have several family members coming for dinner in an hour?  Pull out an EASY indian recipe of course.  This recipe is adapted from a tandori chicken recipe I had found on Pinterest.  It was a good start, but I felt like it was missing something, so I added my own favorite secret ingredients – butter, tumeric, and  cardamom.

I should note that this is my “easy version” of Butter Chicken, and not the real deal.  I am definitely not an expert on Indian food. I just like to try to figure out what’s in my favorite restaurant dishes and get as close as possible to recreating them.  Guess you could say I’m an Indian food hack as well. I just learned of some authentic indian cooking classes in my city though, so I will most definitely be enrolling in some of those!

Easy Butter Chicken

Serves 6-8

INGREDIENTS

  • 1-1.5 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 lb bonesless chicken breasts (cut in 1/2 or into thirds)
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp coriander
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cayenne (red) pepper
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 (13-ounce cans) coconut milk
  • 16 oz plain tomato sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Tumeric
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3-4 whole cardamom pods
  • 1 tsp dried cilantro
  • Recommended accompaniments: cilantro, fresh mint, brown rice, plain greek yogurt (omit the yogurt to be dairy-free)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. In a medium bowl, combine the garlic powder, coriander, cumin, salt, and cayenne with a fork. Dredge each piece of chicken in the spices and set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken, sprinkle any remaining spices on top, and sear for a couple of minutes until golden brown on both sides.
  3. Add the coconut milk, tomato sauce, butter, tumeric and cardamom to the pan, bring to a boil, cover with a lid, reduce the heat to low, and cook until the chicken is done all the way through (no longer pink), about 8 – 10 minutes, (or longer if you like).
  4. Layer in bowls with brown rice on the bottom, then spinach, chicken, sauce, yogurt, and fresh herbs. Enjoy!

HINT:  I like to cook my brown rice in Chicken broth and add a couple cardamom seeds to the pot as well, to give it a little more flavor.

Best Sesame Chicken. EVER.

This is a combination of couple different recipes I had found on Pinterest. I made it to surprise my HyChi lovin’ husband, who agreed that even HyChi ca’t  come close to being this awesome! The sesame chicken came from The recipe Critic. The secret, I learned, is in the breading.  I had never made breading like this, and it changed everything!

The second part, because I wanted to Chinese noodles instead of rice (which my kids won’t eat), are simple sesame noodles, adapted from The Pioneer Woman. There are several steps here, but it is not at all difficult, and SO worth the effort!

Baked Sesame Chicken

AUTHOR: ALYSSA

PREP TIME:  30 MINS      COOK TIME:  1 HOUR     TOTAL TIME:  1 HOUR 30 MINS
SERVES: 6
INGREDIENTS
  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 3 eggs
  • salt and pepper
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • Sauce:
  • ¾ cup honey
  • ¾ cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup rice wine vinegar
  • 1 t sesame oil
  • 1 t minced garlic
  • 1 T cornstarch
  • additional sesame seeds for garnish
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cut chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces and season with salt and pepper.
  2. In separate bowls, place cornstarch and slightly beaten eggs. Dip chicken into cornstarch then coat in egg mixture. You can use a gallon ziploc bag, or a bowl and some Glad Press n Seal to shake the chicken as well.
  3. Heat canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and cook chicken until browned. Place the chicken in a 9 x 13 greased baking dish.
  4. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine honey, soy sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, minced garlic, and 1 T cornstarch. Pour over chicken and bake for 45 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  5. Stir th chicken every 15 minutes so that it coated them in the sauce.

Simple Sesame Noodles

Prep Time:10 MinutesCook Time:10 MinutesDifficulty:EasyServings:8

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces, fluid Thin Noodles, Cooked And Drained
  • 1/4 cup Soy Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 Tablespoons Rice Vinegar
  • 3 Tablespoons Pure Sesame Oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Hot Chili Oil
  • 4 Tablespoons Canola Oil
  • 4 whole Green Onions, Sliced Thin

Preparation Instructions

Whisk all ingredients (except noodles and green onions) together in a bowl. Taste and adjust ingredients as needed.
Pour sauce over warm noodles and toss to coat.
Sprinkle with green onions and toss. I also tossed in some steamed broccoli florets here. 

Reshmi Kabob

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If there’s one type of food my husband and I like more than anything, it’s Indian Food. We used to be regular’s at this fantastic Indian Restaurant in Lincoln, Nebraska called, “The Oven”. We started out by ordering the same 1 or 2 entrees because we knew we’d never be disappointed. Slowly but surely though we started to get a little more adventurous, and eventually starting trying to learn how to cook indian food ourselves. Unfortunately, my taste’s outgrew the typically pre-made sauces you can buy in a jar, and I started seeking out ways to make it from scratch. The only tricky part was finding all the unique spices. Now you can find them more easily, and with Amazon, there’s no reason not to try this stuff from scratch!

Here’s a simple, and healthy kabob recipe that is mild but very flavorful. It’s also a GREAT way to prepare chicken when you are tired of the same ol’ marinades and chicken recipes.

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Momos

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Making Momos

One of my favorite things about cooking is learning to cook ethnic foods. I was born and raised in the midwest, and on a hog farm when I was young. Our meals ALWAYS included the “midwest trio” – meat, potato and corn, (usually canned). I have no idea when or how I learned to LOVE trying new foods. But somewhere along the way, I learned the joy of trying many different foods – and when it’s home cooked and healthy – EVEN BETTER!

I owe this dumpling recipe to my new good friend, Saru who is from Nepal. Saru came to the US four years ago to study nursing and has been away from her family for a long time. We love having her over to our house for dinner, and comparing notes on our cultural differences. After cooking several different meals for her that included, Indian food, traditional St. Patrick’s day food, and some basic American food – she decided to come over and teach us how to make these traditional dumplings from her home. I just have to say how happy we were to learn this, because they are a little bit of heaven in a delicious steamed package.

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