This recipe is one that I've been working on for approximately two years. I'm not joking. We go to this Indian restaurant in Nashville that has the very best curry on a weekly basis. They have memorized our order and even encourage us to get the usual, which I find hilarious. My go to dish is Chicken Vindaloo. It's traditionally a curry made with vinegar and tomatoes and has potatoes.
Indian food can be pretty expensive, and my theory is that they know that Americans can't make it themselves, so they can charge what they like. Making curry is not for the faint of heart. It took me two years to finally get it down pat, and we've been eating my rendition every week as I search for the perfect spice combination and consistency. But, I have finally done it! It's not quite as good as the restaurant but boy is it close.
The key here is patience and cooking the onions properly. Also, use pureed tomatoes. These can be canned or you can actually put tomatoes in a food processor and puree your own. Follow my recipe below, and you can save a bit of money on Indian food!
AUTHENTIC INDIAN CHICKEN VINDALOO RECIPE
For the curry paste:
3 dried chiles or 1 fresh red chile
2 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp kosher salt
2 garlic cloves minced
1 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tsp garam masala
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
a handful of cilantro stems
1 tbsp of ginger paste
1/2 tsp cumin
For the curry:
2 medium yellow onions
one 28 ounce can of tomato puree
1 lb chicken breast, diced in 1 inch cubes
1 potato, peeled, chopped into 1 inch cubes
Extra vegetable oil for drizzling
Cilantro leaves, chopped.
Peel the onions, then puree by pulsing in the food processor until minced. Remove onions to a bowl and clean the food processor for reuse. Put on a small pot of water to boil. When water is boiling, add the cubed potatoes and boil until fork-tender.
In the food processor, add the paste ingredients. Pulse until a thick paste is formed. Set aside.
In a large non-stick pot, like a enamel cast iron pot, over medium-high heat add a drizzle of vegetable oil. Once the oil is shimmering, add the onions. Cook for about 15-20 minutes or until the onions are dark in color (almost brown). Add a tablespoon or two of water to prevent them from sticking to the pot.
Add the curry paste to the onions and cook for one minute to open up the spices. Add 3/4 of the can of tomatoes and mix the paste in thoroughly. Bring to a boil then simmer over low for about ten minutes until the tomatoes are reduced by about half. Keeping the tomatoes at a simmer, add the chicken and cook for about 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Add the potatoes and cook for another minute. Remove from heat. Garnish with cilantro leaves and serve with basmati rice.