Chicken Caju (Cashew nut curry)

Someone asked for a Indian curry that is flavoursome and can be enjoyed by people on a tight budget.  Well, this is not it.  This is a rich and decadent curry that is mild in flavour, but still enjoyable by seasoned curry lovers. There’s a lot of cashew nuts in the dish (250 grams or 1 cup) – to keep the price of ingredients down, then go with raw, unsalted, and slightly crushed cashew nuts from your Indian grocer – ours are about half the price of the ‘good looking’ cashew nuts.

Ingredients:

IMG_26251/4 cup of cream (light whipping cream in the US)
250 grams of raw cashew nuts
2 onions, roughly chopped
500 grams of chicken, cut into 2 cm cubes
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 large cinnamon sticks
2 tsp smoked paprika (or chilli powder, if you want more punch)
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp salt (to taste)
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
1cm of ginger (about 1 tsp) grated
50 grams of butter
Oil for frying

Method:

IMG_2626Start by frying your cashew nuts in half of the butter.  You want a nice even colouring over all the nuts – it’s ok to let them get dark brown, but don’t let them get too black or they’ll taste ashy.

IMG_2627This is about right for us – a couple are overdone, so I picked them out (and ate them).  Take the rest of the nuts out of the pan and set aside – keep the oils/butter in the pan (it’s all flavour!)

IMG_2628Add in the onions, garlic and ginger and fry with the remaining butter on a medium heat till the onions are translucent.

IMG_2632When translucent, add in your ground spices and salt.  If the mixture gets too dry, add in a couple of tablespoons of oil and fry the spices together for 2-3 mins or until the oil separates.

IMG_2633Add in your chopped tomatoes and mix together.  Let the tomatoes reduce in the spice mix.  This should take a further 3-4 mins.IMG_2635When your tomatoes are reduced, put the spice mix into a blender with half of your roasted cashew nuts.

IMG_2637Blend until it forms a thick puree

IMG_2638While the onions, tomatoes and cashew nuts are blending, fry your chicken in a hot pan with a couple of tablespoons of oil and the cinnamon sticks.  Start to sear on all sides of the chicken pieces, but don’t overcook them!

IMG_2639Drop the temperature of your pan Pour back in your blended mixture and stir so all the chicken is covered.  If your pan is too hot, your mixture will stick to the bottom – no big deal, just take the pan off the heat and mix the dried bits back into the dish.

IMG_2641When all the chicken is covered, pour in your cream and combine.  Keep the temperature low, as you don’t want your cream to split.

IMG_2644Serve topped with the remaining cashew nuts, some sliced chilli and anything else that will make it look pretty (I’ve gone with some chopped spring onions – my coriander plant is still not surviving well!). Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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