Monday, I gave you the recipe for Curry-Roasted Pumpkin-Carrot-Sweet Potato Soup, the appetizer for our Indian meal. Today, I’m giving you the entree.
The March/April 2011 issue of Eating Well magazine had this interesting recipe. Always up for an adventure, I decided to give it a try – solo of course, since my hubby is a serious foodophobe. My strategy was to cut the recipe in half and have it for dinner and lunch. As it turned out, it fed me for three meals.
I liked that it used crisply cooked asparagus, a vegetable that doesn’t get much attention in our home. Guy won’t touch it. Blame it on his mom, who made him sandwiches of asparagus and egg to take to school. He was less than enthusiastic about them. There was a Polish peer who was sick of his mom’s kielbasi sandwiches, so the two swapped, and parents were none the wiser. I used to think that forcing your child to eat would turn him/her off of certain foods, and Guy was my prime example of this premise. After almost 50 years of being married to the pickiest eater on the planet, and having a son who is his clone, my opinion has changed. Guy’s mom forced him to eat, but I never forced my son. What they have in common is this: both have very distinct likes and dislikes when it comes to food. Neither is adventurous with meals. They just have strong opinions on what they want to eat. But I digress.
You’re going to have to like the flavors that are in this dish, which, frankly, had me a bit squeamish at first. Cumin and fennel are two very earthy spices. Add garlic, fresh ginger, chile and asparagus and you are getting borderline bitter. Even the coconut milk doesn’t smooth this out. The surprise: I liked it. For my leftovers, though, I cooked up some brown basmati rice with half coconut milk, half water and added golden raisins. This was the perfect accompaniment to this entree.
I will make this dish again, but am a bit sad that I don’t have anyone to share it with at my home. Here’s hoping that one of you will make this and tell me that you liked it.
|Indian-Spiced Chicken and Asparagus |
Adapted Half Recipe from Eating Well Magazine, March-April 2011
Rating: 8.5 out of 10
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|INGREDIENTS: 3/4 tsp. cumin seeds |
3/4 tsp. fennel seeds
1/2 lb. chicken, cut into 1” chunks
3/8 tsp. sea salt, divided
1 Tbsp. olive or canola oil, divided
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1-1/2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 small fresh chile, seeded and minced (I used half of a jalapeno)
1-1/2 tsp. minced fresh ginger
3/4 lb. trimmed asparagus (about 1 lb. before trimming), cut into 1” pieces
1/4 cup lite coconut milk
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
In 12” iron frying pan (or other heavy skillet), toast cumin and fennel seeds over medium heat till fragrant and beginning to brown, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and finely grind in a spice grinder. (I use my coffee grinder for this, but you could also use a mortar and pestle.)
Toss chicken with 3/4 tsp. of spice mixture + 1/8 tsp. salt. Heat 1-1/2 tsp. oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, stirring frequently, till browned, 4-5 minutes. Transfer to plate and cover to keep warm.
Reduce heat to medium and add remaining 1-1/2 tsp. oil, onion, garlic, chile and ginger. Cook, stirring, till softened, 2-3 minutes. Add asparagus. Sprinkle with remaining spice mix and cook, stirring, for two minutes.
Stir in coconut milk and remaining 1/4 tsp. salt. Simmer two more minutes. Return chicken to pan, along with collected juices. Cook till heated through, about 2 minutes. (If desired, serve with basmati brown rice cooked with half water, half coconut milk. Stir in a generous handful of golden raisins towards the end of cooking time.) Yield: 2-3 servings