“Healthyish” Quick Tomato Chicken Curry

by Hilary Gauntt on January 9, 2018

Knowing everyone is wanting to undo a little of the damage they did over the holidays, Bon Apetit is offering a selection of recipes this first half of January that they label “Healthyish.” Two weeks of “just so happens to be healthy” dinners. In other words healthy, lighter ingredients without sacrificing flavor. After seeing lots of articles proposing a New Year’s “Detox” ; Healthyish sounds more my style.

This recipe fits the bill. I love all kinds of curries, and this tomato based one was new to me. Don’t skip the yogurt and cilantro topping; they finish it beautifully. Next time I will use chicken thighs instead of breasts as they are less likely to overcook. And add a bit more heat with some chopped chiles or up the 1/2 tsp. of red pepper flakes. If you’re feeling “healthyish” check out the other recipes online; lots of creative, appealing ideas here.

3 Tbs. ghee, coconut oil, or extra-virgin olive oil

1 large red onion, cut into 1/2-inch wedges

1 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and finely grated

4 garlic cloves, crushed

Kosher salt

1 Tbs. plus 1 tsp. garam masala

1 bay leaf

1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

2 Tbs. honey

1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes

1 15-ounce can coconut milk

3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds total) cut into 1-inch thick pieces

1/2 cup whole-milk Greek yogurt

1/2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro

Heat ghee (or oil) in a large wide saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, turning occasionally, until undersides are golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add ginger and garlic and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes; season with salt. Add garam masala, bay leaf, and red pepper and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in honey and cook until slightly caramelized, about 1 minute.

Add tomatoes along with juices and bring to a boil, smashing down on tomatoes with a wooden spoon until pieces are no bigger than 1 inch. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring often and scraping up browned bits from the bottom of the pot, until sauce thickens, 8 to 10 minutes. Add coconut milk and cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens, 20-25 minutes; taste and season with salt if needed. Add chicken strips and reduce heat to low. Cook , partially covered, until chicken is cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes. Season with salt.

Stir yogurt, a big pinch of salt, and 2 Tbs. water in a small bowl. Drizzle yogurt sauce over stew. Top with cilantro before serving. Serves 4.

Note: I used low fat coconut milk. When using whole tomatoes, I have learned to use a kitchen scissors to cut then into pieces while still in the can; just easier. Some lime juice and chopped scallions at the end might be nice as well! If you don’t have garam masala, curry powder will work fine. That’s my Mother’s fabulous Northwest Purple Plum Chutney on the plate in the picture; for the recipe click on the Virginia’s Cookbook category.

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