Spicy Rosemary Chicken

You’ll need a cast iron skillet for this dish. Serve with rice or potatoes.

3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 Tbsp rosemary sprigs, crushed
1/4 c lemon juice, divided
1/2 Tbsp olive oil or melter butter
1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
1/4 tsp each paprika, turmeric, and chili powder(or cayenne pepper)
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat oven to 450 deg F. Heat cast iron skillet over medium heat.
Combine rosemary, 1/8 c lemon juice, oil, gigner-garlic paste, and spices.
Coat chicken pieces with mixture and add chicken to skillet. Cook five minutes or until chicken begins to turn white.
Turn chicken, drizzle with remaining lemon juice and transfer the skillet to the oven. Bake for 25 minutes or until chicken. Is cooked through.

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Palak Paneer (Spinach and Cheese)

This is one of my favorites, and my kids practically inhale this stuff. We eat it about once a month or so. You can adjust the spices as needed to make it spicier or milder.

1 Tbsp ghee
1 tsp Cumin seeds
1 tsp Fennel seeds
1/2 tsp caraway seeds
1 large Onion,chopped
2 medium Tomatoes, chopped
1 tsp Turmeric
1 tsp to 1 Tbsp chili-garlic paste
1 lb chopped fresh baby Spinach
5 oz paneer, cubed
1/2 c heavy cream
Salt and Pepper to taste
Lemon Juice, freshly squeezed, to taste

In a large pot, melt ghee over medium heat. Add cumin, fennel and caraway seeds and cook until fragrant. Add onion and saute until the onion is translucent. Add tomato and a little salt. When tomato softens, add turmeric and chili-garlic paste and saute a minute or two longer.

Add spinach and allow to wilt. Blend with immersion blender until smoothish. Add paneer and cream and cook until heated through. Remove from heat and add salt, pepper, and lemon to taste.

Cooking Pastes: Ginger-Garlic and Chili-Garlic

These are pretty common ingredients in Indian cooking; I know one Indian cook who puts at least one of them in just about every dish that comes out of her kitchen. They’re pretty simple, and store about six months.

Ginger-Garlic Paste
Equal parts peeled, chopped ginger and peeled, chopped or minced garlic
Turmeric: 1 tsp per Tbsp of ginger-garlic mixture
Light cooking oil: 1 tso per Tbsp of ginger-garlic mixture

Blend all ingredients into a paste. Store in a glass jar in the fridge.

Chili-Garlic Paste
5 tsp minced garlic
Small handful of Indian green chili peppers(these can e hard to find, so substitute about 5 large jalepeno peppers if you can’t find green chilies)
1 Tbsp light cooking oil

Blend all ingredients into a thin paste. Cook the mixture down into thick paste over medium heat. Store in a glass jar in the fridge.

Chicken Tikka Masala

Traditionally, I’m told, this is served with plain yogurt and naan. I like to pair it with peas. It can be made with chicken or with tofu. If you’re going to make it with chicken AND tofu, make two batches of the marinade and marinate them in separate bags.

Marinade:
1 cup plain yogurt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
4 teaspoons salt, or to taste

3 boneless skinless chicken breasts -OR- 2 1-lb blocks of firm tofu, drained and pressed, cut into bite-size pieces

In a large bowl, combine yogurt, lemon juice, and spices. Stir in chicken or tofu, cover, and refrigerate overnight.

Tomato-Cream Sauce:
1 tablespoon butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons paprika
3 teaspoons salt, or to taste
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Heat a grill. If using wood skewers, soak them while the grill heats up. 
Lightly oil the grill grate. Thread chicken onto skewers, and discard leftover marinade. Grill until juices run clear, about 5 minutes on each side. 
Melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Saute garlic for 1 minute. Add spices. Stir in tomato sauce and cream. Simmer on low heat until sauce thickens, about 20 minutes. Add grilled chicken, and simmer for 10 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter, and garnish with fresh cilantro.