This vibrant colored sauce is a delicious way to enjoy chicken in a beautifully flavored sauce steeped in curry, fresh ginger, turmeric and roasted tomatoes. If you don’t want to go through the effort of roasting and pureeing fresh tomatoes, you can substitute canned crushed tomatoes. I always opt for using the fresh ingredients when they look good and are readily available. I served this chicken dish with some steamed basmati rice on the side along with green beans and salad.
- 3 -4 lbs chicken pieces (bone in-skin on breasts, thighs or legs), 6 pieces
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas
- 3 lbs fresh Campari tomatoes (substitute 1- 24 oz can crushed tomatoes)
- 1 cup full fat coconut milk (be sure to mix before using)
- 1 1/2 inch ginger root, peeled and minced
- 1 large sweet onion, finely diced
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon sweet curry (I love penzeys)
- 2 teaspoons turmeric
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon honey
- kosher salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 tablespoon ghee (substitute unsalted butter)
- fresh cilantro sprigs for garnish
Preheat oven to 400. Place the tomatoes on a large rimmed baking sheet and toss the tomatoes with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast in oven for about 30 minutes until tomatoes are bursting and slightly charred and releasing their juices. Once cool enough to handle, puree in food processor and set aside.
In a large heavy bottom skillet, heat the vegetable oil to medium high. Gently pat chicken dry on either side with paper towel, absorbing any extra moisture. Season with salt and pepper. Place chicken, skin side down in pan and sear for about 4 minutes a side. Don’t rush this process as you want to a achieve a nice golden crust before you braise the chicken. The chicken is ready when it lifts easily from the pan and is golden. Repeat process on the other side, leaving space between the pieces of chicken. Remove chicken from pan and set aside and keep warm. Turn flame to low, add the ghee along with chopped onions garlic and ginger to the same pan, stirring well to coat in pan juices. Add curry, turmeric and smoked paprika to the pan to toast and coat the onion mixture. When mixture is soft and fragrant (about 3-5 minutes), add the tomato puree to the pan along with the coconut milk and honey. Adjust seasonings to taste with salt and pepper and additional curry as desired. Place chicken along with any accumulated juices back into the pan, skin-side up and bring liquid to a boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer braising chicken in sauce for about 30 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Add the chickpeas during the last 10 minutes of cooking. Just before serving, garnish with a little cilantro. Enjoy!