the joy of someone else’s cooking

coconut chicken and okra

You might well say that I have no business posting this dish. I didn’t pick out the recipe and I did none of the cooking; in fact, I came home from work late one evening and it was all finished and waiting for me! And not only did he cook, he took pictures! Yes, I have a wonderful husband.

Dinner was a chicken curry with a coconut-cilantro-chile-mustard seed sauce, served over basmati rice with a side of spiced okra. The sauce was really tasty, very rich and spicy with a strange impression of peanut butter (maybe that was just me?). The chicken was so tender it fell apart when we touched it with our forks. We would definitely make this one again.

coconut chicken

Chicken Curry with Coconut and Mustard Seeds

from 660 Curries by Raghavan Iyer

  • 1 cup shredded fresh coconut
  • 1/4 cup packed cilantro leaves
  • 1 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 1 tsp tamarind paste
  • 4 green serrano chiles
  • 3 Tbsp canola oil
  • 1 tsp mustard seed
  • 1 chicken, cut up, or 1 packet of boneless skinless chicken thighs (2-3 lbs)

In a food processor, combine the coconut, cilantro, salt, tamarind and chiles. Puree until smooth and set aside.

Choose a pan large enough to hold the chicken in a single layer. Heat the oil to medium-high and add the mustard seeds. If you have a spatter screen now would be a good time to use it. When the popping is over, add the chicken and cook 3-5 minutes, until golden brown. Flip and cook another 3-5 minutes.

coconut chicken

Pour over the coconut-cilantro sauce and make sure the chicken pieces are coated. Lower the heat to medium and simmer for 15 minutes, basting occasionally with the sauce. Reduce the heat again to medium-low, cover the pan and let it simmer another 10-12 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Serve with white rice. Makes fantastic leftovers.

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