Something new is under the sun…the combo of my new creamy chicken curry, in the southwest Indian style…with my new sauce, the yellow chile extract from Africa. It is yummy beyond all describing! DRTV gives you the picture…
Creamy Chicken Sauté from Southwest India with African Yellow Fatali Hot Sauce
The African Yellow Fatali Chile is in the Habañero family, which hoists two flags to the chef: 1) the chile is hot! 2) it exhibits the Habañero flavor range, which goes from fruity, to the bakery smell of bags of cookies. A creamy dish is excellent for this Hot Sauce, since both fruit and cookies are beautiful with cream. And dairy mitigates heat! Ah…but how to find one in which the Habañero heat doesn’t take over everything? And that’s where Indian food comes in, with the best flavor blends in the world for standing up to heat. This Chicken Sauté, inspired by the flavor profiles of southwest India, is balanced with the Habañero on the head of a pin.
serves 4 as a main course with side dishes
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 large cloves, peeled
⅔ cup chopped onion
6 rounds of unpeeled ginger root, each round the size of a quarter
2 teaspoons cracked garam masala spices (SEE GARAM MASALA NOTE)
8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, bones reserved
1½ cups heavy cream
½ cup chicken stock
scant ¼ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh cilantro, plus leaves for garnish
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh mint
12 drops African Yellow Fatali Hot Sauce (or to taste)
salt and pepper to taste
1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter. Once foaming, smash two of the garlic cloves and add them to the pan along with the chopped onions. Cook to soften, about 3-5 minutes, but do not brown.
2. Add the ginger root, garam masala spices, and chicken bones to the garlic and onion, stir to combine. Pour in the heavy cream and the chicken stock, raising the heat to medium-high. When the cream starts to foam, immediately reduce the heat to medium-low. Keep the sauce at a low simmer for about 30 minutes, partially covered.
3. While the sauce is simmering, cut each of the chicken thighs into four pieces. Lightly salt the chicken and dust with flour.
4. In a large sauté pan over medium heat, melt the remaining tablespoon of butter. Mince the remaining two garlic cloves, and cook to soften, about 3 minutes.
5. Toss the chicken in the sauté pan until lightly cooked on the outside, about 3-5 minutes.
6. Strain the sauce mixture over the chicken in the sauté pan. Add the cilantro and mint, stir well, and cook the chicken until just cooked through, approximately 15-20 minutes.
7. Near the end of the cooking time, judiciously add drops of the African Fatali Hot Sauce. This is best accomplished with the use of an eye-dropper, which will allow for the controlled application of heat to the dish. I like 12 drops…but you may like a little more or a little less.
8. Adjust seasoning. Garnish with cilantro leaves. Serve while hot, preferably with fluffy, buttered rice.
NOTE: You may, if you wish, drizzle a little room-temp heavy cream on the chicken—⅛ teaspoon per plate—as a kind of garnish.
GARAM MASALA NOTE: “Garam Masala” refers to a mix of what thy Ayurveda calls “hot” spices…though they mean “hot” in a different way than we do. Usually included in the blend is cinnamon, clove, cardamom and bay leaf. There is ground garam masala available…but what I have in mind for this recipe are bags of the whole spices gathered together as “garam masala.” It is the latter product I’m recommending here. If you can’t find whole garam masala in an Indian grocery, simply buy some discrete cinnamon, clove, green cardamom and bay leaf. Whether you bought the spices together or separately, simply crack the spices coarsely and add to the dish.