5 cloves garlic, peeled
1 tbsp minced ginger
2 tbsp vegetable oil
3 cm piece cinnamon stick
2 green cardamom pods, cracked
2 white onions, finely diced
2 ripe tomatoes, diced
2 tsp salt
1 kg chicken thigh fillets, cut into pieces
Coriander leaves to garnish
3 tsp fennel seeds
3 tsp cumin seeds
3 tsp coriander seeds
1 tbsp black peppercorns
4 small dried red chillies
- To make the pepper masala, dry-roast the spices over a gentle heat. Cool. Using a spice grinder, (or clean coffee grinder) grind to a fine powder. Store in an airtight container and use as required.
- Using a mortar and pestle, pound the garlic and ginger to a smooth paste.
- Heat the oil in a wide, heavy-based saucepan and fry the cinnamon and cardamom over moderate heat for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the onion and stir over a high heat until golden, approximately 4 minutes. Add half the pepper masala and stir until fragrant. Add the tomato and fry for a few minutes, then season with the salt and cook, stirring, for another 1-2 minutes.
- Add chicken pieces and stir until they are coated with the aromatics. Fry for 3−4 minutes until the chicken is beginning to colour. Add 150ml water, cover pan with lid.
- Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 12-15 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed and the chicken is tender.
- Remove from the heat and check for seasoning. Serve with steamed rice, sprinkled with coriander.