Saturday, July 7, 2007

Super Spicy Indian Dish

I love Indian food and we just don't prepare it enough at home or go out to Indian restaurants all that often.
Wow! Johnnycakes and I ate a super spicy chicken Indian dish for dinner tonight. I'm not even sure what you would call it but it's sort of like a curry dish. It was delicious but it really packed a punch! At least we were warned beforehand!

My best friend's fiance's family is Indian and his parents are constantly sending him snacks and spices from India. They loaded us up with some goodies while we were at their apartment last night, which included banana chips, rice sticks and most importantly, these intriguing Indian flavoring packets.

The brand name is SARAS and the varieties included a chicken, beef or lamb and fish packet. Johnnycakes and I were skeptical at first because we usually shy away from sodium and MSG packed prepared flavoring and try to "do it ourselves" when it comes to spices. We were wrong though because the package said "No Preservatives" and the ingredients were all natural items such as "onion, coconut, ginger, garlic, coridander, curry leaves" etc. After brief cooking instructions from our host and a warning about the intense heat factor the dish packs, we went along our merry way with the intention of making the chicken packet tonight for dinner.
We discovered the reason for the cooking lesson the night before was because the package only includes very vague instructions for preparing the dish in a pressure cooker, which we don't own. We figured the dinner also enabled us to clean out the fridge of a lot of vegetables we had leftover from July 4th, including potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, yellow peppers and onions.
Johnnycakes filled a stockpot about halfway with water and let it come to a boil before adding the SARAS chcken flavoring pack, three chicken breasts and three chicken drumsticks. We thought that the mix of light and dark meat would really enhance the dish's flavoring. We also added the potatoes at that time so they would cook with the chicken. After about 15 minutes,we added the rest of the veggies and let the pot simmer for a while. We also had rice cooking in our rice cooker.
Once the rice was finished, we added some flour to the aromatic Indian stew so that it would thicken to our liking. The stew thicken pretty quickly and it was ready to be served.
I picked the dark meat off the bone and mixed it with a little chicken breast before adding it to the rice and stew mixture in my bowl.
Whoah! Boy was it hot! Luckily, some like it hot and I am one of them. So is Johnnycakes. We had to eat the dish a little cautiously because of all the heat but we both loved it. Johnnycakes was in a full sweat by the time he finished his bowl. We both felt that peanuts would have complemented the dish well but unfortunately we are all out. Maybe we can pick some up before we eat any of the leftovers.
We can't wait to try the SARAS fish and beef packets. I wonder what flavors they contain and if they are as spicy? We'll keep you posted on our adventures with these powerful little flavor packets of Indian yumminess...

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