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A very nice dish from Madhur Jaffrey that is best served with a simple rice, a salad or vegetable dish.
For the sauce
- 2 tablespoons tomato puree (paste)
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄4-1⁄2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 cup cream
For the curry
- 4 (5 ounce) boneless skinless chicken breasts (weighing approx 1 lb 4oz in total)
- salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 inches piece cinnamon sticks
- 6 cardamom pods, cracked open
- 6 cloves
- 1 medium onion, cut into fine half-rings
- 1 inch piece fresh gingerroot, peeled and cut into fine slices, then into fine strips
- 1 -3 hot green chili pepper, cut at a diagonal into fine strips (I use three but I do remove the seeds)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon black mustard seeds or 1⁄2 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/.
- Put the tomato purée/paste in a bowl and mix with one tablespoon of water.
- Add all the remaining sauce ingredients, in the listed order, mixing as you go.
- Spread out the chicken breasts and season them generously on both sides with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Put three tablespoons of the oil in a non-stick frying pan and place over a high heat.
- When hot, add the cinnamon, cracked cardamom pods and cloves.
- After ten seconds, add the chicken breasts in a single layer and brown them lightly on both sides.
- Remove with a slotted spoon and place in a single layer in an ovenproof dish.
- Add the onions, ginger and green chillies to the same frying pan and fry them in the residual oil until they are golden-brown in colour.
- Remove with a slotted spoon and spread evenly over the chicken breasts.
- Add the remaining one tablespoon of oil to the frying pan, when hot add the mustard seeds.
- As soon as they pop - this will be just a few seconds - add the garlic and stir.
- When the garlic starts to brown, pour in the sauce.
- As soon as the sauce heats up and starts bubbling, pour it over and around the chicken without displacing the onion mixture.
- Place the ovenproof dish, uncovered, in the oven and bake for 25 minutes.