Friday, November 18, 2016

Around The World In 52 Eats: India



Welcome to Week One of Around the World in 52 Eats! We're so excited about this journey and we can't wait to share our experiences with all of you. 

Our inaugural meal took place right after Caitlin returned from visiting the UK at the end of August. There's a lot of Indian influence in the food there and she was riding that Indian street food high, which is how we came up with this whole idea in the first place. I chose Butter Chicken as my dish and she chose Matar Paneer as hers. We brewed some Chai tea to drink with it and I recommend putting this on in the background as you cook and eat to get the full cultural experience!



The first week we were still figuring out how we wanted to approach the meals, and I chose not to make the sauce from scratch. I wasn't as confident in my skills at that point.

10 weeks in and I don't typically follow a recipe anymore. I like to put my own spin on things and experiment. It's my favourite part about cooking; never the same meal twice! It took a couple of weeks for me to really find that sense of confidence in my abilities and I'm getting better and better with every meal. I love learning which spices compliment each other best, substitutes for certain ingredients. and developing the ability to eyeball it instead of measuring everything out. It makes it interesting for me and I never dreamed I'd love cooking as much as I do. 

Caitlin found her Matar Paneer recipe here and it was absolutely mouthwatering.  You can find the recipe for the butter chicken below. 






Indian Butter Chicken

Recipe by Melissa Suggitt

This recipe doesn't follow the one on the jar completely. I added my own twist on it.

Prep time: 5
Cook time: 15-20
Total time: 20-25
Yield: 4-6 Servings

Ingredients
  • 1 jar Pataks Butter Chicken Sauce
  • 2 medium size, cubed Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breast
  • 1 medium, chopped Onion (yellow)
  • 1 clove, finely chopped Garlic
  • 3 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • To taste Salt
  • 1 cup Rice
  • 2 pieces Naan Bread

Instructions

1. Pour the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat and brown the chicken for approx. 3 minutes. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. 

2. Add the onion and garlic to the pan and sautée for 2-3 minutes. You can use 1 tbs of minced garlic if you'd prefer.

3. Pour the jar of butter chicken sauce into the pan and let simmer on low heat for 10 - 15 minutes.

4. While the chicken is cooking, place the naan bread on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Place in the oven for about 2-3 minutes.

5. Add salt to taste. We personally leave it out.

6. Serve over rice. (We have a small 4-cup rice cooker and it is magic.)



I didn't follow the instructions on the jar of sauce completely. I looked up other butter chicken recipes and pulled from those to get the final product. The addition of the garlic and onions added some extra layers that brought the dish to a whole new level.

Also, if you are like me and don't own a garlic press, chopping the garlic by hand is a pain in the ass. There's just something extra about using fresh garlic as opposed to minced garlic in a jar. It took me weeks to realize we owned a mini food processor and I'd been wasting so much time... live and learn!

Let me know in the comments if you decide to give either of these a try. 

4 comments

  1. I always use that brand of butter chicken and I like to to let the chicken marinate in a little bit of the sauce first. If I'm looking for a quicker meal I'll go ahead and dump the chicken and jar of sauce into a baking dish and throw it all in the oven, the chicken ends up being so tender and perfect for tearing apart with naan!

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  2. Oh my gosh that looks and sounds absolutely delicious! I am so glad you shared this with us -- I definitely wouldn't mind trying too cook these dishes.

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  3. I just started eating Indian food this summer, and fell in absolute love. I'm afraid to try to cook my own though, other than throwing a jar of tikka masala sauce over rice and chicken. My boyfriend has a family friend who's Indian and she's invited us to come and cook with her, so that should be fun but I hear it's a lot of work. Anyway. Your food there looks seriously amazing and if tomorrow weren't American Thanksgiving I would be making it a requirement to get Indian food for dinner. Seriously, absolute love. All I need to hear is Indian food and I'm like where my chana masala at?

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