I love curries but have generally not made them too often. Indian cooking seems like it has to be hard and long and complicated, so I was happy that this recipe seemed to be pretty easy to make. As usual, the recipe below is slightly modified from the original to reflect how I actually made it.
Chicken Peanut CurryElise suggests 2 serrano pepppers, but those aren't easy to find here; also, I only used 1 jalapeno so as not to make the recipe too spicy. As well, she suggests garnishing with mint and cilantro, but I didn't have any mint handy.
3 lbs boneless, skinless chicken pieces, cut into 1 1/2 inch wide chunks or strips
1/2 cup flour
4 Tbsp curry powder
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1/2 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced
2 Tbsp garlic, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded, de-veined, minced
4 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
8 green onions, chopped, greens included
1/3 cup finely chopped cilantro
2 limes cut into wedges
1 Rinse chicken and pat dry. In a small sturdy freezer bag, combine the flour, curry powder, salt and pepper. Shake well. Add the chicken pieces and shake to coat well.
2 Heat oil in a large saucepan on medium high heat. Add chicken pieces. Cook 5-10 minutes (depending on size of chicken pieces) tossing occasionally to cook chicken evenly. Add the ginger, garlic, chili pepper and 1/2 cup of the chicken broth to the saucepan. Cook for 3 minutes, scraping the pan with a spatula and stirring to combine everything well.
3 Add the peanut butter, stirring quickly to incorporate it with the chicken. Add the remaining 3 1/2 cups of broth slowly, stirring continuously to maintain an even texture. Let simmer for 10 minutes. Right before serving, add the coriander and green onions. Salt & pepper to taste.
4 Serve with basmati rice. Top each serving with fresh cilantro. Squeeze a little lime juice over it as well.
So, how did this one go over with the troops? Although I thought it was just fine, the rest of the gang felt it was "missing something" in the depth of flavour category. I think since I considerably reduced the heat factor by using 1 jalapeno instead of 2 serranos (or even 4 jalapenos like Elise also mentions trying), it may not have been as flavourful as they were hoping. When I reheated for leftovers the next night I added a teaspoon of some curry masala spice mix I had lying around in the fridge as well as about a 1/4 cup of raisins and let it simmer with that a bit. It made it a bit spicier (and sweeter) but the peanut gallery was decidedly happier with the results. How much of that was just due to the leftovers-always-better-the-next-day factor? Who knows.
In any case, next time I'm definately going to use 2 jalapenos, a bit more peanut butter, raisins and a bit more curry powder directly into the pot. I'd also consider adding some veggies to the mix, like a green pepper or two or some zucchini.