For the chicken:
1 to 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1/2 cup whole-milk yogurt
Juice from 1/2 lemon
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
For the sauce:
1/2 tablespoon ghee, butter, or olive oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, diced
1-inch ginger, peeled and minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 to 2 tablespoons garam masala
1 teaspoon paprika
Pinch cayenne, optional
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup roughly chopped cilantro, plus extra for garnish
3 cups cooked basmati rice
Trim the chicken thighs of any large piece of fat and lay them in a shallow dish. Whisk together the yogurt, lemon juice, cumin, and coriander. Pour the yogurt mixture over the thighs and stir to fully coat each piece. Chicken can be used immediately or marinated in the refrigerator for up to 6 hours. Chicken will become more tender and flavorful the longer it marinates.
When ready to cook, line a baking sheet with foil and set a wire cooling rack over the baking sheet. Turn on the oven broiler to high with a rack positioned 6 inches below the broiling element.
Remove the thighs from the yogurt and shake off any extra marinade. Lay the thighs, spaced an inch or so apart, on the wire rack over the baking sheet. Transfer the thighs to the oven and broil for 6 minutes. Flip the thighs and broil for another 6 minutes. Check that the thighs are cooked through and register at least 165°F on an instant-read thermometer; broil in additional 2 minute intervals if necessary until the thighs are cooked. Remove the thighs from the oven and set aside to cool.
→ Multi-Tasking Tip! Start the rice on the stovetop while the chicken is cooking. Set a second timer to monitor the cooking of the rice.
Warm a half-tablespoon of ghee, butter, or oil in a large skillet. Add the onions and cook until the onions are soft and translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the tomato paste, 1 tablespoon of the garam masala, paprika, and cayenne and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Pour the tomatoes and their juices and reduce the heat to low. Simmer until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, dice the cooled chicken into bite-sized pieces.
Stir the cream and chopped chicken into the sauce, and simmer until the chicken is warmed through and the sauce is just starting to bubble, 1 to 2 minutes. Taste and add salt, pepper, or other seasonings to taste. Depending on the potency of your masala spice mix, you may want to add up to another tablespoon of spice. Stir in the cilantro just before removing the sauce from heat.
Serve immediately with rice. Top each serving with another sprinkle of cilantro. Leftovers will keep refrigerated for up to a week.
Serves 4 to 6.
Uploaded: Mar 12, 2014