So, it’s been a while. To put it simply, I had twenty-three big exams lasting for a month and once they finished I was off to Glastonbury festival to celebrate. I have missed this blog and have definitely missed reading all the other great blogs on a regular basis. I’m back now, on my summer holidays until September, and look forward to getting this blog busy again with lots of delicious things planned! Starting with…a savoury dish!I don’t often cook savoury food, and so the ideas of proper amounts of spicing and seasoning are not familiar to me. I thought a good place to start would be Indian food – giving me a chance to use new flavours and see the awesome combinations that make spicy food taste so good. I love curry (my Mum makes a fab chicken korma and Thai green curry that I really want to learn to make) but as we’re in July I wanted to make something a little more summery so I made chicken tikka, cucumber raita and naan bread. I can imagine making large batches of this chicken for summer barbeques or cold for a picnic: delicious. Both the chicken and the breads were surprisingly easy. I used a Mary Berry chicken tikka recipe (her recipes are always foolproof) and a naan bread recipe from Anjum Anand’s book, Indian Made Easy. The naan bread recipe doesn’t use yeast which makes it really simple and quick. I used caraway seeds and black onion seeds (also known as nigella seeds) from above to top the naan breads and they were delicious. The black onion seeds in particular are just perfect and give off a very tempting aroma. The chicken marinade was simple to make and I was surprised by the inclusion of ground nutmeg – not something I expected to see there. Once the three components were ready it was time for the all important taste test. Spicy chicken, cooling raita, crisp buttery naan bread. Eaten in my garden in the July sunshine, it was good. Very good. All in all, a delicious introduction to Indian cookery for me and I look forward to making more. If all savoury cooking gives results like today then expect to see a lot more of it around here!The recipe for the naan bread can be found here, although there is a typo: the bread needs to be left to rise for 1hour, not 10-15mins.
Chicken Tikka from Mary Berry’s Complete Cookbook
Ingredients: 750g skinless,boneless chicken breasts, cubed
Marinade: 2tbsp plain yoghurt
2tbsp tomato puree
1 small onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1tbsp tamarind paste
1tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cumin
large pinch of cayenne pepper
large pinch of grated nutmeg
1. In a bowl, combine all the marinade ingredients.
2. Toss the chicken in the marinade. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
3.Thread the chicken on to the skewers, put under a hot grill and cook for 3-5 minutes on each side. Serve at once, with a cucumber raita.