A good curry takes time to make from scratch but you can make some short cuts. My version of a butter chicken recipe has taken quite a few attempts at getting the flavour and texture I want from a curry. It also has to be okay for the kids to eat as well – not too spicy.
I think we are not alone when I say sometimes it is just easier to get your curry from the local Indian takeaway, and we do when we want a sample of a couple of different curries. However, we tend to eat curry at least once a week and it gets expensive if you eat takeaways that often. My wife and have always loved curry! We went on holiday to Goa just so we could have a great excuse to eat curry for breakfast, dinner and lunch. It was amazing! That’s why it is so important that when we do have homemade curry, it must tastes authentic. The trick to this? Make sure you buy a good Garam Masala spice mix. You can make it yourself but buying it is one of those short cuts. Also, don’t use cheap tin tomatoes – just like making Italian pasta sauces, tomatoes are just too important to get wrong.
Serves – 4 to 6
Prep – 10-15 mins
Cooking Time – 35 mins
3 large onions
2 tbsp garam masala
1 tsp ginger
1 tbsp of tomato puree
1 tsp powdered garlic or 3 cloves garlic
1 tsp paprika
1 tin of good quality chopped tomatoes or passata
30g butter minimum ( I some times add a bit for for a creamier taste)
salt and pepper
Chilli powder if you like it a bit spicy
150 ml of water
3-4 chicken breasts
- Dice the onions and sautee until transculent in some olive oil. Be sure to salt the onions as it helps draw the moisture out.
- Add the garam masala to the pan and cook the spices out on a low heat for a few minutes.
- Once the spice has cooked out the onions will take a beautiful dark colour. At this point add the tomato puree and cook out for another two minutes.
- Add the rest of the spices and a little splash of water or chicken stock.
- Add the chopped tomatoes and the water. Let the pan simmer for about 15 mins until it has reduced by a third.
- Use a food blender to blend the sauce until it is smooth
- Strain the sauce through a sieve. This will make the sauce really silky and without the lumps. You don’t have to do this but I think it makes the sauce better.
- Chop and cook the chicken with some oil. Be sure to season the chicken with salt and pepper. It makes the difference. You can add some extra flavour to the chicken by making the sauce the day before and marinating the chicken over night. The chicken takes about 8 mins to cook in a saucepan.
- Add the sauce to the chicken and bring to a simmer. Add the butter and continuously stir until it dissolves into the curry.
- Serve with basmati rice, yoghurt dip or mango chutney and flatbreads.
Check out the recipes for the sides:
Yoghurt dip recipe