Indian Royal Chicken Cooked in Yogurt

The beauty of this Indian royal chicken cooked in yogurt recipe is that it’s delicious and can be made fairly quickly.  You can just serve it with naan or make some rice to help soak up the sauce.  I have adapted this from Madhur Jaffrey’s Quick & Easy Indian Cooking, which is a great guide for making Indian meals that don’t require a lot of fuss. Plus, she wisely sticks to ingredients that are fairly easy to find outside of India. Her recipe is for four people, my version is dinner for one person.

I made a few other minor changes as well.  The original recipe calls for both dried and fresh coriander.  I don’t generally have fresh coriander (and if I did, it would spoil), so I used a bit more dried instead. 

Make sure to remove all of the whole spices before serving. You don’t want to crunch down on a clove or a cardamom pod!

She calls for slivered almonds, but all I had was ground almonds, so I used that.  I am a big believer in using what you have and not buying special ingredients for a single purpose.  You can substitute slivered, or blanched if that’s easier.  You might even use whole ones, or throw them in the mini-chopper to chop them up.

There’s also a fun bit of chemistry here.  When you add the raisins to the hot pan, they plump up and temporarily revert back to grapes!




Substitutions and Variations for Indian Royal Chicken Cooked in Yogurt

  • try it with ghee (clarified butter) instead of oil, sliced onions, and ginger paste (full recipe here)
  • add potatoes, curry leaves, tamarind paste, and coconut milk (recipe here)
  • make it Hyderabadi style with tomatoes, cashews, red chilis, saffron and turmeric

More Chicken Recipes for One Person

one person chicken curryEasy Chicken Curry Recipe

A super easy recipe largely with pantry staples. It’s got a rich, creamy sauce spiked with cumin, garam masala, and jalapeño peppers. Ready in about 15 minutes.

 

chili garlic chickenChili Garlic Chicken Thigh Recipe for One

Buffalo chicken with a lot less mess.  The garlic adds zest and the chili brings the heat. Cheaper than wings too!

 

crispy lemon chicken thighCrispy Lemon Chicken Thigh Recipe for One

“Fried” chicken without the splatter.  It’s got three kinds of lemon and a touch of brown sugar. Good hot or cold.

 

chicken mango stir fryQuick Chicken Mango Stir Fry Recipe

A bright and colorful tangle of veggies and chicken. If you don’t have fresh vegetables, a frozen stir fry mix will work just fine. Just cook them a bit less.

 




Curried Chicken Soup

Fight the cold weather (and winter germs) with some curried chicken soup.  If you’re sick, the hot soup and the spiciness of the curry will help cut through the congestion and make you feel better!  If you’re healthy, you can enjoy the full flavor!

This soup is pretty low maintenance, there’s not a lot of active work involved. Just chop the veggies, add the stock, rice, and chicken, and let it simmer. And, for soup, it’s ready fairly quickly. It only takes a little over an hour to cook.  I’ve been fighting a lingering cough, so I needed soup. Specifically soup with curry or something spicy to cut through the congestion and fight those germs! So I turned to the Silver Palate Cookbook and made curried chicken soup.  I think it’s working.

The original recipe says to use peas and defrost them first. I didn’t have any peas handy, so I used broccoli instead.  Also, in this case, I don’t think that defrosting first is really necessary. Frozen veggies cook fairly quickly, unless they’re all stuck together in the box.




Making this soup is much easier (and less messy) if you have a stick blender. Just put the blender in the soup, press the button, and puree it. Otherwise, you’ll need to strain it, put the solids in a standing blender or food processor and then add some cooking liquid. Full instructions are in the recipe.

If you have the hand blender, this soup requires very little effort.  Cut up the vegetables, add the stock, rice, and chicken, and just let it cook.

I’ve cut the original recipe in half, so it makes 2-3 servings instead of 4-6.  Eat one right away and freeze (or save) the rest for another day.

More Curry and Curried Soup Recipes

one person chicken curryEasy Chicken Curry Recipe

All you need for a great dinner is a few basic ingredients, a single pan, and fifteen minutes.

 

easy canned tuna curryEasy Canned Tuna Curry

A simple can of tuna, transformed into a meal.  Only takes a few minutes too. Dump, heat, and eat.

 

curried butternut squash soup with applesCurried Butternut Squash Soup with Apples

Perfect for fall, with apples, sweet West Indian curry, and butternut squash.

 

Jewish chicken curry chitarneeJewish Chicken Curry Chitarnee

You probably didn’t expect Jewish and curry together, but there it is.  Ginger, onions, and cardamom make this dish aromatic, warm,  flavorful, not spicy.

 




Indian Fish Fillet in Yogurt Sauce

This week’s recipe was going to be something else, but then I realized I hadn’t defrosted it.  Oops. No matter, this  Indian fish fillet in yogurt sauce recipe will do quite nicely instead.  You’ll just have to wait for the other recipe!

This is adapted from The Wednesday Chef , who in turn adapted it from Madhur Joffrey.  Since the amounts are smaller, you don’t have to heat up the oven. You can make this in the toaster oven instead. It heats up more quickly and it’s easier to clean too!

All you have to do is lightly fry some onions, pour them onto a tray, season and mix the yogurt, and then pour all of that over the fish.

It’s maybe ten minutes of prep, and 20 minutes of baking.  While it bakes, pour yourself a glass of wine or a beer or make some rice to go with it. Or both.

You end up with a rich, creamy sauce that tastes indulgent (but isn’t, since it’s yogurt, not cream).   So no need to feel guilty.

The garam masala, ginger, and cumin add a bit of bite, but not too much (unless you want it spicier, of course). It’s pretty easy and approachable for Indian food.




Substitutions and Variations for Indian Fish Fillet in Yogurt Sauce

  • Add some curry to the sauce for more kick
  • Try pan frying the fish (about three-five minutes per side); add the yogurt sauce at the end, off the heat so it doesn’t curdle
  • Add half a hot chile pepper

More Fish Recipes

easy canned tuna curryEasy Canned Tuna Curry

Turn a can of tuna into a full meal. Just add some pantry staples, heat it all up and you’re ready to eat in just a few minutes.

 

greek fish with lemon and tomatoesGreek Fish with Lemon and Tomatoes

Bring the flavors of the Mediterranean to your dinner plate with this quick, single pan fish recipe. Make a simple marinade, let it sit, and then pan fry.

 

pan-fried tilapia with lemon butter saucePan Fried Tilapia with Lemon Butter Sauce

A splash of citrus, a bit of mustard for bite, and a sprinkle of rosemary add a lot of flavor without much effort.

 

easy mediterranean fish stewEasy Mediterranean Fish Stew

Bring the warmth and sunshine of the Mediterranean to your dinner table, even on a cloudy spring day. This dish is full of flavor from fish, tomatoes, garlic, and citrus.

 

 




Curried Butternut Squash Soup with Apples

There’s nothing better and more comforting than hot soup on a chilly, blustery day. This curried butternut squash soup with apples is perfect for cold fall or winter weekends when squash are plentiful. I had quite a bit of squash left over from making roasted cinnamon nutmeg butternut squash, so this was the perfect way to use it up.   I have adapted the recipe from The Silver Palate Cookbook, with a few tweaks.

First, I cut the recipe in half, as the original recipe made 6 large servings.  Plus, I only had most of one squash left (not two!).  I also substituted apple cider for the apple juice called for in the recipe. This gives it more flavor than just plain apple juice.

One more note, I recommend that you use a mild curry in this recipe (not something super-hot and spicy as it will overwhelm the flavor of the squash and the apples). I have a West Indian curry blend which is more savory than spicy; it works perfectly. If you can’t get the curry, try a teaspoon of ginger and a teaspoon of brown sugar.




Tools and Ingredients for Curried Butternut Squash Soup with Apples

Cuisinart  Immersion Hand Blender

cuisinart hand blenderThe original recipe called for straining the soup, then putting it through a food mill or food processor, and then pouring it back into the original pot.

Doable, but a pain in the neck, and it means two more things to clean.  The immersion blender is much easier to use, and a lot easier to clean up too.  You just pop off the end and wash it.

 

Chief West Indian Curry Powder

Flavorful, but not too hot, this curry blend comes straight from Trinidad.  It works well with butternut squash, a quick chicken curry, or over some cauliflower or roasted potatoes.

Oxo Swivel Peeler

Butternut squash is notoriously hard to peel, but this gadget makes the job a snap. Using this peeler, peeling a squash is no harder than peeling a carrot.

The little hole in the pointed end is great for removing the eyes from potatoes, or taking out bruised spots from veggies.  Oxo was originally designed for people with arthritis, so the handle is soft, round, and easy to grip.

More Butternut Squash Recipes

butternut squash brown sugar vanilla

Roasted Butternut Squash with Brown Sugar and Vanilla

This is definitely a vegetable. Just look at it. It’s got squash right? Well, make it yourself, and close your eyes. You’ll swear it’s a dessert.

 

butternut squash cream sauce pastaButternut Squash Cream Sauce Recipe for One Person

Use up the remaining squash from your soup and make this creamy, rich sauce. It’s both sweet and savory, and absolutely wonderful over pasta.

 

roasted cinnamon nutmeg butternut squashRoasted Cinnamon Nutmeg Butternut Squash

Warm cinnamon and sweet squash are a wonderful side dish for fall. Great with a a roast turkey or chicken.

 

 

 




Easy Canned Tuna Curry

There are some nights when you want dinner and you want it quick. This easy canned tuna curry can be made in just a few minutes. There’s very little prep work.  The toughest bit is opening a can. Just cut up a bit of onion, chop some garlic, grate some ginger, and open a can of tuna. Yes, canned tuna.

If you make extra rice in advance (as I usually do), you just have to heat that up and you have dinner. It’s curry in a hurry.

I adapted this recipe from Madhur Jaffrey’s Quick & Easy Indian Cooking. Her recipe made two or three servings, which I have reduced. She calls for fresh chopped cilantro (which I never have, so I used a bit of dried coriander, which is the same thing). If you do have the fresh version, use 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons.

I have also simplified the preparation a bit.  Yes, it’s possible to want to speed up even a canned tuna curry recipe! I was in a rush! And I was hungry. Rather than slicing the onions into rounds, I chopped them.  I grated the ginger with my microplane zester, instead of slicing it into strips; I didn’t want to bite down on big hunks of ginger! Besides, this way is faster.

During the quarantine, if you don’t have fresh ginger, ground is fine.  No fresh jalapeño? Use canned chilis instead. Don’t have that either? Red pepper flakes work too.

 




More Quick Fish Recipes

 

pan-fried tilapia with lemon butter saucePan Fried Tilapia with Lemon Butter Sauce

Just a few ingredients and you’ve got a fancy-looking dinner.  Tilapia is mild, so it’s a good “starter” fish.  It’s mostly pantry ingredients (you just need to buy fish; Trader Joe’s usually has it frozen).

fish fillet with yogurt sauceIndian Fish Fillet in Yogurt Sauce

A few minutes prep and twenty minutes of baking. The sauce tastes rich and creamy, but it’s made with yogurt so no guilt. There’s a bit of heat, but it’s subtle, not overpowering.

 

tuna cannellini bean saladTuna Cannellini Bean Salad Recipe for One

Got beans? Mix them with some tuna, serve with bread or fruit and you have a meal. You don’t even have to actually cook anything.  All pantry staples, other than the scallion. If you don’t have one, use onion.

 




Spicy Sesame Noodles Recipe for One Person

I recently found myself craving spicy sesame noodles. Unfortunately, I had trouble finding a ready-made recipe that appealed to me. One recipe was too sweet, another was too bland.  Yet a third called for ingredients I didn’t have at hand, like tahini and sesame paste. While those would be good, I dislike buying an entire jar/package/bottle of something just for one recipe. It did give me the idea to include some ginger, which I liked. Besides, I wanted spicy sesame noodles right then and there, not several hours or days in the future!

So, I combined and improvised.  And, of course, cut down the recipes from eight or four people to just one serving.

I also didn’t have long  rice noodles, only linguine, so I used that.  If you use rice noodles, follow the directions on the package to cook them.  There are instructions in the recipe for both.  If you only have linguine (or even short pasta) use that and don’t worry about it.

So, instead of a ready-made recipe, I ended up with my own twist. But, I’m happy to say it turned out really well.

A bit of a warning about this recipe. As is, it’s really spicy, since that chili garlic sauce packs a punch, so if you prefer a milder version, leave it out.

It’s great for a hot summer day, as it requires only that you cook the noodles, and nothing else. Just chop, mix, arrange in a bowl, and eat.

 




Spicy Sesame Noodles Recipe for One Person Substitutions and Variations

  • if you don’t have rice vinegar, use white vinegar
  • top with diced fresh bell pepper
  • add lightly cooked snow peas or broccoli
  • if you want a heartier meal, add in some cooked chicken
  • add 1 tsp tahini  to the sauce
  • garnish with sliced cucumber
  • use the peanut butter and cucumber to make a peanut butter and cucumber sandwich — yes, really)

More Spicy Noodle Recipes

spicy beef noodle soupSpicy Beef Noodle Soup for One

Exactly one serving of hot, spicy soothing soup. And it only takes a few minutes to prepare too.  You don’t have to simmer it for hours.

 

szechuan chili noodlesSchezuan Chili Noodles

Think Dan Dan noodles, but faster and easier.  You only need a few ingredients, and you don’t have to order out either.

 

easy singapore noodles with chickenEasy Singapore Noodles with Chicken for One Person

Nobody knows how this got its name. It’s not really from Singapore. But, it is crunchy, slightly spicy, warm, and delicious. Also a good way to clean out the fridge.

 

 




Easy Chicken Curry Recipe

This easy chicken curry recipe is a quick and delicious way to get the taste of Indian food without a lot of work.  The original recipe came from The New York Times (I think), but I had to put my own spin on it. It only requires a few ingredients and a small skillet and you can put the whole thing together in fifteen minutes. Just perfect when you’re hungry and in a hurry!

If you don’t have Greek yogurt, you can use sour cream instead. As a bonus, sour cream is more heat-resistant than yogurt so you can add it directly to the pan, rather than dirtying a separate bowl. I use the yogurt because I prefer the flavor. Also, it seems more authentic to use yogurt instead of sour cream.

Garam masala is a spice mixture (kind of like curry, every mixture and every manufacturer is a bit different).  It adds warmth and savor to the dish (not spiciness).




Chicken Curry Recipe Variations and Substitutions:

  • If you don’t have jalapeño pepper, add a pinch of red pepper flakes along with the curry
  • Add some ginger
  • If you don’t have boneless chicken, cut up a bone-in thigh, or just start the chicken first, cook it for ten minutes, then add the onions, and follow the rest of the recipe (with the bone-in thighs, the recipe will take about 25 minutes total).

Recommended Books and Ingredients

Madhur Jaffrey’s Quick & Easy Indian Cooking

I love Indian food, but I used to find it a bit intimidating, because it’s not as familiar to me as a home cook. However, this cookbook made that a lot easier (and I use it quite a bit).

My favorites are quick chicken korma, lamb with spinach, fish fillets in curry sauce, and curried tuna (the canned kind, not fresh). Most of the recipes take less than 30 minutes to prepare.

Indian Cooking Unfolded

Many Indian cookbooks use ingredients that can be hard to find if you don’t live in an area with a large Indian or Pakistani population. I have some excellent spice stores near me, but many don’t.

That’s one reason this cookbook caught my eye. He gives you the standard ingredients, and then tells you how to “cheat” if you don’t have them available. It makes the food much more accessible. The recipes are easy to follow and have 10 ingredients or less.

Rani Garam Masala

An essential mixture for Indian cooking. It’s a blend of 11 different spices, so it’s full of flavor.  Great for chicken (like this recipe), or use it on eggs, lentils, or veggies. It’s got cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, and nutmeg so the flavor is “warm” and aromatic, rather than spicy or hot.

More Chicken Recipes for One Person

peruvian roast chicken with green saucePeruvian Roast Chicken in Green Sauce Recipe

I just can’t stop eating this. Crispy chicken skin, juicy meat, and a lip-smackingly delicious sauce. Use it on the chicken, as a dip, or on fish.

 

chicken mango stir fryQuick Chicken Mango Stir Fry

Sweet mango and bell peppers, with a little kick from green or red chile. Don’t have fresh peppers? No problem. A frozen stir fry mix is fine. So is frozen mango. Ready in about 20 minutes.

honey sticky garlic chickenHoney Sticky Garlic Chicken

Crispy, sweet, spicy, and delicious. And all you need to make it is fresh chicken and pantry ingredients.

 

Jewish chicken curry chitarneeJewish Chicken Curry Chitarnee

Not the Jewish food you were expecting! This is from India, so it’s fragrant with warm spices like ginger, onions, and cardamom.