Changing for the better, one bite and (deep) breath at a time.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

(Healthy) Crockpot Indian Butter Chicken

A even busier schedule calls for some creativity and serious crock-potting in the kitchen. This recipe, found on "A Year of Slow Cooking", was super simple to make and definitely delicious. Make sure to use organic pasture butter whenever you can. It's high in conjugated linoleic acid (CLA's), making it healthier than butter from cows who eat grain.

This recipe is also great prepped ahead of time, refrigerated overnight, and placed on the crockpot the next morning. I hope you e
njoy as much as we did! By the way, if you're cooking for men-folk...this one gets double thumb's up! Our good friend Dave is living with us for a few months as he starts his new career as a pharmacist (he just moved out here from LA). I made this for both him and my husband, and they were both fans.

Don't be afraid of these spices if you've never cooked Indian food before. They're great investments for your pantry and can be used in tons of recipes, plus they smell great and have some wonderful health benefits. Garam masala, a combination of cardamom, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, and black pepper packs an anti-inflammatory punch, and both curry and ginger may have cancer-preventive properties. I used ground cardamom to taste instead of cardamom pods, and I easily found garam masala at Whole Foods.
They were about $5 or $6 each.

2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs - go organic!
1 onion, sliced
6 garlic cloves, chopped
4 T butter
(organic pasture butter from Whole Foods)
15 cardamom pods (sewn together!)

2 tsp curry

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 can coconut milk (I used light)
1 can (6 oz) tomato paste

2 T lemon juice
1 cup plain yogurt - I used organic plain nonfat Greek

Instructions: Assemble ingredients:

Use a 5 quart or larger crockpot. Carefully sew together the cardamom pods using a needle and thread (if using). You can put them in a little cheese cloth bundle, instead, if you have that in the house.

Put chicken in crockpot, and add onion, garlic, and all of the dry spices.

Plop in the butter and tomato paste.

Add lemon juice and coconut milk. (If you're prepping this the night before, add the lemon juice and coconut just before you put it on the crockpot.) Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or high for 4. The chicken should shred easily with 2 forks when fully cooked.
Stir in plain yogurt 15 minutes before serving. Discard cardamom pods.

Salt to taste, serve with brown basmati rice, veggies of your liking, and even some lentils cooked with onion and garlic. You can use the extra sauce as a topping for the vegetables.



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