I know I said that I would be posting every week but I haven’t kept that promise, so I apologize. I went back home for two weeks before school started to recharge my batteries and visit loved ones that I have been missing.
While I was back home, I had the chance to impress family and friends with some of my previous recipes, such as my Stuffed Acorn Squash, my traditional Tzatziki Cauliflower pizza,Sorted Food’s take on the famous Ratatouille, and my all time favorite curry dish, Jamie Oliver’s Vindaloo.
I have previously posted one of his recipes for a vegetarian Jalfrezi, but this time I spiced it up a notch by making his super spicy Vindaloo. My mother loves it when I make this recipe, she had never had an Indian dish until I made her this dish back in the spring. Now, every time I come home, I find the fridge full of all the necessary ingredients to make her her favorite dish.
I know I blab a lot about Jamie, but y’all should seriously invest in his Food Revolution cookbook (based on his TV show). It has delicious and time saving recipes, and his Indian section is perfect. Instead of buying pre-made curry pastes (although they can be a time saver), he encourages you to make your own and provides you with 5 different types of the most common curry pastes on the market.
A quick note about this recipe before I get into it… This is definitely not for the weak. The recipe, in total, calls for 8 chiles… I am a weakling when it comes to spicy heat, so I tend to dial down the numbers of chiles just so I can actually taste my dish and not burn my taste buds off. So beware!
This is a two part recipe, first part being the Vindaloo paste
For the paste, you will need
- 2 gloves of garlic
- thumb size piece of ginger
- 4 dried red chiles (I USE A COUPLE OF DASHES OF DRIED CHILI FLAKES)
- 1 tbsp. turmeric
- 1/2 tsp. sea salt
- 3 tbsp. canola oil (the recipe actually calls for peanut oil)
- 2 tbsp. tomato paste
- 2 fresh red/green chiles (I OMITTED THEM)
- small bunch of fresh cilantro
- 1 tsp. black peppercorns
- 4 whole cloves
- 2 tsp. coriander seeds
- 2 tsp. fennel seeds
- 1 tsp. fenugreek seeds
First step, toast the peppercorns, cloves, coriander seeds, fennel and fenugreek seeds in a dry frying pan until they start to smell.
Step 2: in a food processor, combine all ingredients and blend until you get a chunky smooth paste. Set aside while you prep the rest of the ingredients.
For the main dish, you will need
- 2 medium onions (1 1/2 will do just fine), finely sliced
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1-2 fresh chiles (TO YOUR TASTE), minced
- thumb size piece of ginger, minced
- fresh cilantro stalks, minced (KEEP THE LEAVES FOR GARNISHES)
- 4 ripe tomatoes, quartered
- glug of vegetable oil
- pat of butter (LITERALLY A THUMB SIZE OF BUTTER)
- chicken thighs, boned and skinned, chopped into bite size piece (YOU CAN ALSO USE PORK SHOULDERS)
- Vindaloo paste (SEE ABOVE)
- 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp. honey
Step one: in a super large pot, fry your onions, garlic, ginger, chiles and cilantro stalks in the glug of oil and pat of butter (the oil prevents the butter from burning) for 10 minutes
Step 2: add chicken/pork and Vindaloo paste and stir to combine *** NOTE: using chicken thighs is a much better option than chicken breasts, who tend to get dry and tough***
Step 3: add tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, honey and 1 1/3 cups of water (enough to cover everything) and stir to combine
Step 4: bring to a boil then turn the heat down and simmer for 45 minutes (or longer) with the lid on. You’ll want to make sure to stir and check it from time to time so nothing gets stuck in the bottom of the pot… We had that happen once where the balsamic vinegar pretty much burned the bottom of the pot because the heat was too high when it was added….such fun scrubbing it off…
Step 5: Once the times up, season accordingly, but sparingly
I like to serve my Vindaloo on basmati rice, or with a side of naan bread, accompanied by a bowl of yogurt (a dollop of yogurt will cut the spice for those with sensitive taste buds) and garnish with the spared cilantro leaves!
I still need to work on my plating skills, but alas, I was starving and in a rush, therefore not the nicest of the plates.
This recipe makes a huge batch (Jamie says it serves 4 to 6 people) but I’ve managed to make 12 individual portions and froze them for last minute meals. Excellent if you’re on the go and want something delicious, flavorful and nutritious!
Give it a try and let me know what you think!