“Where life is colorful and varied, religion can be austere or unimportant. Where life is appallingly monotonous, religion must be emotional, dramatic and intense. Without the curry, boiled rice can be very dull.”

By: musicisfoodoflove

Aug 20 2010

Category: Recipes

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-C. Northcote Parkinson

Hey, y’all!

I am back in Austin, TX!  Urbana was really fun; I got to catch up with a lot of old friends, celebrated one of my best friends from elementary school turn 21, and played numerous jazz and world music gigs around the Champaign/Urbana area!  My dad’s new music ensemble, The Tone Road Ramblers, were in town rehearsing, and it was fun to get to drink, eat, and play music with them.  Overall, it was a great trip, and I will miss Urbana dearly until I get to come back sometime in the near future.  Austin has been a lot of fun though!  I got to stop at Amy’s Ice Cream, my favorite coffee shop, Spiderhouse Café, and sleep in my own bed!  Can’t beat that 🙂

Anyway, my parents are stressing out about the school year coming up soon at UT-Austin, so I figured I’d cook them some Indian comfort food: CHICKEN CURRY!  This was my first meal (not dessert) I’ve made on this lovely blog, so I was a little nervous about it!  It took a little longer than I had expected; there’s a lot of prep time that I should have taken into consideration.  All of the flavors worked remarkably well, and everything came together at 8:00 pm on the dot!  My family and I ate the Chicken Curry, Basmati Rice, and Bhindi Masala (okra) while watching the movie Julie & Julia (click on Chicken Curry and Bhindi Masala links for original recipes).  Funny story about this movie: the protagonist of the film, Julie Powell, is my godfather’s niece!  I remember meeting Julie and her husband at a family reunion in Bastrop, TX….they were very similar to how they were depicted in the film!  Anyway, the movie was super cute, and the chicken curry was a perfect side dish to the film 🙂

Anyway, here are the recipes for the meal I cooked tonight!

Recommended listening: “Within You Without You,” The Beatles, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band


2 large floury potatoes – peeled and cut into large wedges
1 large onion (chopped finely)
2 cloves of garlic (crushed)
10 grams root ginger (peeled and grated)
1 green chili (finely chopped)
3 tsp coriander-cumin powder (I mixed ground coriander and ground cumin together and measured 3 tsp)
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp chilli powder
2 tsp salt
3 Tbsp tomato puree
15 grams coriander – chopped
3 Tbsp peanut oil
2 large skinned chicken breast fillets – washed and cut into large chunks
250 ml water
2 Tbsp butter

Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade.  Place the potato wedges in a saucepan and boil for 15 minutes.  Place the onions, garlic, ginger, green chilli, coriander-cumin powder, garam masala, turmeric, chilli powder, salt, tomato puree, chopped coriander and the oil in a large mixing bowl. Mix together thoroughly.  Add the chicken and mix again.  Transfer into an ovenproof dish that has a lid.  Add the par-boiled potatoes and water to the dish. Mix gently and then place the butter on the top.  Put the lid on the dish and put in the oven for 40 minutes. At this point check that the chicken and potatoes are cooked.  The potatoes should have started to melt making a thick sauce.  Serve with basmati rice (I cooked the rice in a rice cooker) and Bhindi Masala (recipe below).


1 pound fresh okra, tops removed and sliced 1/2-inch thick
1/4 tsp peanut oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/4 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground red pepper (I used ground cayenne pepper, but be wary of how spicy you want it!!)
1/2 tsp ground cumin

Spray a non-stick skillet with cooking spray and put 1/4 teaspoon of oil right in the center. Heat on medium until pan is warm. Add the cumin and mustard seeds right to the center of the oil and fry for 1 minute, or until they begin to pop. Add the onion and garlic and stir for 2 more minutes.  Add the okra and remaining spices. Stir well and cook, uncovered, until browned on all sides. Prepare to spend at least 20 minutes, stirring every few minutes, for the okra to cook completely.

Hope y’all enjoy!




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