Sep 1, 2009

The chicken is always greener on this side of the table

Time for some lean meat. There is a particular type of chicken dish that I adore. Its got Cilantro and yoghurt in it. The first time I had it, if i remember correctly, is some 3 years back when I was living in the dorms and R was visiting me. He made this awesome dish with chicken marinated in Cilantro and yoghurt paste. Basically. From then on I have developed this taste for green looking chicken dishes. Later I have found that its very popular in several endemic :) human populations-- to put it very scientifically :). Spain and India to name a few.
Now being the experimentalist-- and a very impatient one at that-- I tried to do it as simply as I can. And I have made 'SEVERAL' varieties of this recipe. Here is one--the most simple and popular-- of them all


1 pound of skinless chicken. For some tips on your chicken, check it out here . You can try skinless boneless varieties of course. I like skinless chicken, with bones, and cut into small bite size pieces

1 small cup of fat free sour cream (if you like calories go for the one with fat or whatever reduced variety  you like)

2 small bunches of Parsley or Cilantro or a mixture of two (one bunch of each)
5-6 large garlic cloves
1 tbsf grated ginger
2 green chili peppers- chopped up. If you don't like heat. Pass on this one

2 tbsf extra virgin olive oil (EVOO-- for all you rachel ray fans out there, like me :))
Salt and black pepper for seasoning

Lemon wedges for garnish

And you take all of these and.....

Put all the ingredients--except the chicken-- in a food processor or blender and go ghrrrr. Till its a smooth mixture but the parsley/ cilantro retains its texture. Basically you should be able to tell the parsley or cilantro in the paste. Marinate the chicken in the sauce for 15-20 minutes. I loose patience and go for about  10 minutes of marinating time. And while I am waiting on the chicken to soak up the juices, I turn the up to 420 F and let it preheat.
When the oven and the chicken are ready, bake for 30 minutes turning once.  Season with salt and black pepper. I prefer not using the pepper if I am using the green chili. Adds too many layers of heat or my palate. Follow by broiling on high for 6 minutes turning once. This browns up the chicken real nice. If you prefer not, skip the last step. Its your dinner guys. Have it as you want it :)
Just a few things to keep in mind. Ginger, chili pepper and black pepper-- all add heat and flavor. But the heat hits you at different places on your tongue. So go easy on the green pepper if you cannot tolerate heat.  
Garnish with lemon. And serve with long grain rice, tortillas, bread. 

You can do all kinds of things with this one. Its very very versatile. e.g if you like an extra bit of flavor you can add mint to the paste ~ bout 5 leaves, maybe. Or if the garlic is looking too much..go easy on the number of cloves you use. Or if you hate garlic (you don' you?), you can use 2 tbsf garlic oil (I found this one in the whole Foods, in front of the butchers counter). This will leave a faint garlicy flavor but not too strong a one.

Remember its your dinner, its your recipe--its YOUR TURF :)

I am told this does not even look like chicken...really?

Happy eating and healthy living

1 comment:

Confessions of a dreamer said...

I don't care what it looks tastes great..........without a doubt this has to be my favorite chicken recipe so far........and for all those you think I am gushing too much.....TRY it and you'll see what i mean.............