This version of Indian butter chicken was lusciously creamy and subtly spicy. My entire house smelled like butter while it cooked- wonderful! According to the article, butter chicken was created in the early 20th century as a way to soften leftover tandoori chicken with tomatoes, butter, and cream. Genius.
I served it over brown Basmati rice along with warm naan on the side to soak up all of the sauce. We also had roasted asparagus.
The recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit, contributed by Rick Martinez. I marinated the meat for 3 hours, reduced the number of cardamom pods, and used the fenugreek leaves but omitted the fenugreek seeds.
For the Marinade:
½ cup whole-milk Greek yogurt
4 garlic cloves, grated
1 tablespoon fenugreek leaves, optional
1 tablespoon finely grated ginger
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
For the Sauce and Assembly:
½ cup (1 stick) cultured or unsalted butter, divided
1 3-inch cinnamon stick
3 to 5 green cardamom pods
1 whole clove
2 teaspoons fenugreek seeds, optional
2 medium onions, sliced
2 serrano chiles, split lengthwise (seeded, if desired)
4 garlic cloves, grated
1 tablespoon finely grated ginger
1 tablespoon fenugreek leaves, optional
1 tablespoon garam masala
1 teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
2 28-ounce cans whole peeled tomatoes
½ cup heavy cream
chopped cilantro, Brown basmati rice, and naan, for serving
To Make the Marinade:
Whisk yogurt, garlic, fenugreek leaves, if using, ginger, and salt in a medium bowl.
Add chicken and toss to coat.
Cover and chill at least 1 hour and up to 3 hours.
For the Sauce and to Serve:
Melt 4 T butter in a large wide pot over medium heat.
Cook cinnamon, cardamom pods, clove, and fenugreek seeds, if using, stirring, until slightly darker and fragrant, 1–2 minutes.
Add onion and chiles, season with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is golden and beginning to caramelize, 8–10 minutes.
Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, until very fragrant and ginger starts to turn golden and sticks to bottom of pot, 2–3 minutes.
Add fenugreek leaves, if using, garam masala, paprika, and turmeric and cook, stirring, until very fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add tomatoes, breaking up into pieces with a spoon, and cook until brick red and most of the liquid is evaporated, about 1 minute.
Using a potato masher or large spoon, smash tomatoes and continue to simmer, uncovered, until sauce is the consistency of a thick ragù, 40–50 minutes.
Discard cinnamon stick (leave other whole spices).
Transfer mixture to a blender and purée until smooth. (I used a Vitamix.)
Cut remaining 4 T butter into pieces. Add butter and cream to blender and purée until creamy; season with salt.
Return sauce to pot and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, preheat broiler.
Arrange chicken in a single layer on a wire rack set inside a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet.
Broil until chicken starts to brown in spots (it will not be cooked through), 7–8 minutes per side.
When cool enough to handle, cut into ¾” pieces.
Add chicken to simmering sauce, cover, and cook until chicken is cooked through, 8–10 minutes.
Top chicken and sauce with cilantro. Serve with rice and naan alongside.
Note: Butter chicken can be made 3 days ahead. Let cool; cover and chill.
I made this dessert for my Valentine this year. ❤ He added a sprinkle of cinnamon on top!
In part, I chose rice pudding because I wanted to make a dessert in ramekins that I had just found at an estate sale. 🙂 Thankfully, my husband is a fan. This recipe was slightly adapted from Food 52 Genius Desserts, contributed by Molly Wizenberg.
Yield: Serves 6 to 8 (I filled 6 ramekins)
1 1/2 cups (355 g) water
3/4 cup (135 g) white Basmati rice
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
3 cups (735 g) whole milk
1 cup (235 g) heavy cream
1/2 cup (100 g) granulated sugar
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
cinnamon, for serving, optional
Bring the water, rice, and salt to a simmer in a large heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Turn the heat to low, cover, and simmer gently until the water is absorbed, about 10 minutes.
Pour in the milk, cream, and sugar.
Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean with the tip of a paring knife and then add the seeds and vanilla pod to the pot. Stir to combine.
Turn the heat to medium-low and simmer gently, uncovered, stirring occasionally and scraping the bottom of the pot with a rubber spatula, until the rice is tender and the mixture thickens to a soft, loose pudding texture, about 30 to 40 minutes.
Remove from the heat and set aside the vanilla bean.
Spoon the pudding into 6 to 8 small bowls or ramekins.
The pudding can be served warm or chilled. To chill, press plastic wrap onto the surface of each pudding to keep a skin from forming and refrigerate thoroughly until cold. (I prepared the pudding in the morning to serve that evening.)
I am in love with kabocha squash- it is just so creamy and sweet. This dish may be the ultimate autumn casserole. It was a little bit involved to prepare but the results were worth every minute.
This recipe was adapted from Bon Appetit, contributed by Claire Saffitz. I slightly modified the proportions and method. Fabulous!
4 to 6 servings
1 small to medium kabocha squash
7 large garlic cloves
3 6-inch-long rosemary sprigs
½ cup heavy cream
freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch Tuscan kale (I used a 10 oz bag), ribs removed and torn into 1-2″ pieces (about 8 cups)
2 medium shallots
1 pound fresh pork sausage, such as sweet Italian (about 4 links)
2 cups crumbled cornbread, from a 6×4 inch piece
2 T unsalted butter
1 T olive oil
Bake cornbread. (I used Trader Joe’s Cornbread Mix.) Set aside to cool.
Position a rack in center of oven; preheat to 400°, preferably on convection.
Cut off stem end of kabocha squash and rest on cut side. Cut squash in half. Scoop out seeds and stringy innards with a spoon; discard. Cut squash into 1″-thick slices. Using your knife, slice off the tough peel and layer of light green flesh beneath.
Smash the garlic cloves with the side of the knife and remove peel.
Combine squash, garlic, rosemary sprigs, heavy cream, and ¼ cup water in a medium saucepan. Season generously with salt and pepper and bring to a gentle simmer over medium heat. Cover pot and reduce heat to low. Simmer until squash is tender and easily mashes when pressed with the back of a spoon, 20-25 minutes.
Meanwhile, grasp stem end of each kale leaf. Starting at stem, slide your other hand along length of leaf to strip leaves. Repeat with entire bunch; discard stems. Tear leaves into 1″–2″ pieces (you should have about 8 cups).
Peel 2 shallots and thinly slice crosswise.
Use the tip of your knife to prick the sausages all over in several places.
Crumble cornbread into coarse crumbs (you should have about 2 cups).
When squash is tender, remove saucepan from heat. Uncover and pluck out rosemary sprigs, leaving leaves inside pot. Transfer entire mixture to a medium bowl (reserve saucepan) and mash with the back of a spoon or a potato masher until no distinct pieces of squash remain. Season with salt and pepper.
Wipe out pot with paper towels and heat over medium. Add butter and heat until melted. Add shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 4 minutes.
Add kale to the pot, a couple of handfuls at a time, stirring to wilt between each batch, and cook until leaves are dark green and wilted, about 3 minutes; season with salt and pepper.
Transfer to kale to the bowl with squash, then fold to incorporate.
Heat the olive oil in the same saucepan over medium and add sausage. Cook, turning once, until browned on both sides (they won’t be cooked through), about 6 minutes. Transfer to cutting board and let cool for a few minutes (reserve saucepan again and do not pour out fat from sausages–you’re going to use it one more time).
Meanwhile, using a rubber spatula, scrape squash and kale mixture into a shallow 2-qt. baking dish and smooth top. (I coated the baking dish with cooking oil spray.)
Cut sausages crosswise into 2″ pieces and nestle into top of squash mixture, spacing evenly.
Heat the drippings remaining in the saucepan over medium and add cornbread crumbs. Cook, stirring, just until crumbs are evenly coated in fat. Scatter cornbread crumbs over squash mixture; season with more salt and pepper.
Bake gratin until crumbs are toasty and brown and sausages are cooked through (you can insert an instant-read thermometer into center of sausage to check if registers 140°, or just cut into one with a knife), about 15 minutes.
Speaking of strawberry cocktails… the added bonus of this amazing fresh strawberry ice cream is that the sweetened vodka-based macerating liquid makes a wonderful base for a celebratory summer cocktail. Nice! 🙂
The texture and color of this ice cream was absolutely incredible. It was the perfect use for my precious, freshly-picked strawberries. The ice cream recipe is from Martha Stewart Living; I included a recipe for the bonus cocktail below.
For the Ice Cream:
Yield: 1 1/2 quarts
1 pound strawberries, hulled and halved (about 3 cups), plus 8 ounces more, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup low-fat milk
1 cup heavy cream
2/3 cup sugar, plus 1/2 cup more for macerating
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup vodka or silver tequila
In a blender or Vitamix, puree halved strawberries with lemon juice and salt. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve. (You should have 1 1/2 cups of puree; reserve any excess for another use.)
Combine milk, cream, 2/3 cup sugar, and corn syrup in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer 2 minutes.
Strain mixture into a bowl set in an ice bath and let stand, stirring occasionally, until cold, about 5 minutes.
Stir in strawberry puree. Refrigerate, covered, at least 2 hours and up to overnight.
Stir together remaining 1/2 cup sugar and vodka. Add chopped strawberries and macerate at room temperature at least 2 hours, or in the refrigerator, covered, up to 12 hours.
Process puree mixture in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. When it has the texture of soft serve, drain macerated berries (reserving syrup for another use) and fold into ice cream.
Transfer to a loaf pan and freeze, wrapped in plastic, at least 4 hours and up to 1 week.
Let stand at room temperature 10 minutes before serving.
For the Bonus Cocktail:
Yield: 1 cocktail
fresh juice from 1/4 large lime
3 oz strawberry-vodka-sugar macerating syrup
tonic (for a sweeter cocktail) or seltzer (less sweet), as desired
Combine lime juice and macerated strawberry syrup in a glass.
Fill with ice and top with tonic or seltzer, as desired.
I love springtime pasta dishes loaded with vegetables. This version was creamy, rich, and absolutely delicious. Chopping the asparagus so that it could be completely incorporated throughout the pasta was genius.
This recipe was adapted from Ruth Rogers of River Café London: Thirty Years of Recipes and the Story of a Much-Loved Restaurant cookbook, via Food 52. I modified the proportions to use one pound of pasta. I also left the asparagus tips intact. Amazing!
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
14 to 16 ounces taglierini, tagliatelle, or pappardelle pasta
5 to 6 ounces Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, freshly grated
Trim or snap off the tough ends from the asparagus spears. Cut into 1-inch pieces; reserve tips in a separate bowl.
Finely chop the 1-inch pieces of asparagus all together with 2 of the garlic cloves and the herbs in a food processor. (I chopped the garlic and herbs first and then added the asparagus.)
Bring the cream to a boil in a saucepan with the remaining 4 whole garlic cloves and simmer until the cloves are soft. Remove from the heat; discard the garlic.
Heat the olive oil and butter in a separate large pan and sauté half of the chopped asparagus for 5 minutes, stirring. (I used a 14-inch skillet.)
Add the rest of the chopped asparagus-herb mixture and the reserved asparagus tips, followed by the flavored cream. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the cream begins to thicken, about 6 minutes. Season to taste. Remove from the heat and keep warm.
Cook the pasta in a generous amount of boiling salted water, then drain thoroughly.
Add to the sauce along with about half of the Parmesan and toss together.
This dish was so creamy and delicious I could barely stand it. The spicy kick made it absolute perfection.
This recipe was adapted from The Yellow Chilli Cookbook by Indian celebrity chef Sanjeev Kapoor, via The New York Times. This creamy lentil stew is his signature dish. I reduced the butter (by HALF), doubled the recipe, increased the garlic, used jalapeños, and used a pressure cooker to expedite the cooking process.
1-inch piece ginger, cut into thin strips, for garnish, as desired
brown Basmati rice, for serving
Mix together both types of lentils and rinse thoroughly in salted water. Drain. If using a pressure cooker, cover with 2-inches of water; cook on low for 10 minutes. (Alternatively, add 1 cup water and soak for 1 hour.)
Drain lentils again, add to a small pot with 1 cup water and bring to a boil. Skim the scum and dirt off the top and discard.
Strain the lentils and return them to the pot. Add 1 cup water, the green chiles and ginger and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.
Add 1/4 cup of the butter and simmer on low heat, uncovered, for 45 minutes, stirring often and mashing with the back of a big spoon as the lentils soften.
After about 35 minutes, melt the remaining 1/4 cup butter in a deep nonstick pan; add the tomato purée and sauté on low heat until fat rises to the surface. (I used a 4-quart enameled cast iron pot.)
Add the red chili powder (or cayenne), ground coriander, fenugreek leaves and garlic to the tomatoes and cook for a couple of minutes, stirring constantly, until the mixture begins to dry out and stick to the pan.
Add the lentils and mix well. Add the cream and mix well. Add 1 to 2 cups water (for desired texture) and salt to taste, and bring to a boil.
Serve hot, over rice and garnished with ginger strips, as desired.