Ajwain Murgh (Chicken with Carom Seeds)

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YESSSSSSSSS….it’s Mommy’s birthday tomorrow, and I’m already hyper! There’s a sense of excitement that I’m sure everyone can associate with birthdays, especially when it’s a special someone’s birthday. Now, you must be wondering why my post shows the picture of a chicken….heh, well, that’s partly because this dish is something I’ve made, to be served to her tomorrow..along with some other dishes too. And a cake…how can we not have cake? 😀

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We have a tradition in our family; a special birthday meal, followed by cake-cutting in the evening, and sometimes a party of a quiet family dinner. Even when I was young, I used to want to do something special on my parents’ birthdays and their anniversary…which often led to small-scale destruction of household properties…….but, we shall let that go, eh? 😀 Hee hee hee.

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And then, as I grew up, I began to tinker in the kitchen, aided by my Gran or sometimes, Dad. I’d plan stuff and they would help me execute it 🙂 Even now, the tradition remains, and accordingly, I pre-planned a small luncheon on Mom’s birthday tomorrow.

This chicken dish is a recipe I came across on Sanjeev Kapoor’s website, and it struck a chord with me due to it’s utter simplicity, and the use of ajwain (carom seeds). It’s a very quick dish to prepare as well, so no need to fuss about in the kitchen for ages.

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I would have made this fresh, tomorrow itself, but I like to plan and even cook ahead, because I’m not that fast in the kitchen. Like the birthday cake, I usually start 2 days before the event, be it for a delivery or for family functions. Unfortunately, Amazon messed up my order horribly, and my plan for baking the perfect strawberry cake fell flat. I improvised of course…and the cake is now chilling in the fridge, but that is for another post.

The use of minimal ingredients in this dish makes me love it even more; especially since I didn’t have to weep over onions. I’ve kept the recipe as mentioned, except the addition of some red chili powder, which gives the dish it’s slightly reddish-yellow hue. You may also keep the gravy dry, or a little flowy if you’re having it with rice-based dishes.

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Ajwain Murgh (Chicken with Carom Seeds) —- Recipe credits, Sanjeev Kapoor’s Khana Khazana.

Ingredients: 

  • Chicken – 750 gms, on the Bone 
  • Yogurt – 1/2 cup
  • Carom seeds (ajwain) – 1 tbsp
  • Ginger-garlic paste – 2 tbsp
  • Red chili flakes – 2 tsp
  • Red chili powder – 1 tsp
  • Salt – to taste
  • Oil – 4 tablespoons
  • Fresh cream – 1/2 cup
  • Fresh coriander leaves chopped 1/4 cup

Method:

  1. Mix the chicken pieces with carom seeds, yogurt, ginger-garlic paste, red chili flakes and salt in a bowl.
  2. Set aside to marinate for 30 mins to an hour.
  3. Heat oil in a non-stick kadhai or pan, and add the chicken pieces, shaking off the excess marinade. Reserve marinade.
  4. Sear on high for 8 to 10 mins until chicken is well-browned.
  5. Turn down heat, and pour the remaining marinade. Mix well.
  6. Add the red chili powder, and cream, mix.
  7. Now cover and simmer for 5 mins, until chicken has released water. 
  8. Take off cover/lid, check chicken (ensure to scrap the bottom of pan, or it might get stuck), and add 1 cup of water, and the chopped coriander.
  9. Mix, and now cook for 5 to 6 mins, or until chicken is tender, and gravy has reduced. (It took me 7 mins in all).
  10. Ladle into a bowl, garnish with some chili flakes, coriander strands, and serve hot with rice, roti, paratha.

 

 

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