I was home alone – just me, a bunch of coriander and one chicken breast fillet. It was bound to happen. All the ingredients were there – pensive and, I fancied, watchful. The night was dark and I was hungry. So hungry…
- 400ml can coconut milk
- small bunch coriander
- 6 large garlic cloves
- small piece fresh root ginger, quartered
- 1-2 thin green chillies
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 8 skinless chicken thighs or drumsticks
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves
- thumb-size piece cinnamon stick
- 1½ tsp cumin powder
- 1½ tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1 tsp tamarind paste
- Whizz together the coconut milk and coriander (leaves and stalks) in a food processor, then tip out and set aside. Quickly wipe out the machine, add the garlic, ginger and chillies, then whizz with enough water to make a paste.
- Heat the oil in a large non-stick pan. Brown the chicken well on all sides, then remove. Add the onion, cloves and cinnamon and fry until lightly coloured. Add the chilli paste to the pan, then cook until most of the liquid has evaporated.
- Return the chicken, then stir in the powdered spices and coconut paste. Bring to a boil, cover the pan, then cook for 40-50 mins, removing the lid halfway through cooking so the sauce can thicken. Check the chicken is cooked, stir in the tamarind paste, season to taste, then add a splash of water if the sauce has thickened too much.