Chicken: Murgh Khubani

posted by BarbCA 05-06-102 4:51 PM

Murgh Khubani

1 kg (2-2 1/4 lb.) chicken
12 whole dried apricots, soaked for 1 hour in cold water
1 tablespoon ghee or oil
3 medium onions, sliced
5-6 cloves garlic, peeled and ground to a paste
2 tablespooons fresh root ginger, peeled and ground or finely chopped
3 green chillies, sliced
3 green cardamom pods, crushed
2.5 cm (1 inch) cinnamon stick
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
1-2 teaspoons salt
500 ml (16 fl oz.) water
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads, soaked in 2 tablespoons hot milk or water
1/2 teaspoon Kashmiri garam masala
2 teaspoons kewda water (optional)

Cut the chicken into 8 pieces and remove the skin. Drain the apricots and remove the stones if necessary.

Heat the ghee or oil in a pan and fry the onions, garlic, ginger, chillies, cardamoms and cinnamon until the onions are golden brown on colour. Add the chicken pieces, fry until golden and then add the tomatoes and salt. Fry for a few minutes until the oil separates out. Pour in the water. Cover with a tight fitting lid and reduce the heat. Simmer over a low heat for 25 minutes.

Add the apricots and saffron to the pan. Stir well. Cover again. Cook for a further 10 minutes on a low heat, stirring carefully from time to time. The apricots should not become mushhy. Stir in the garam masala. Remove from the heat and sprinkle with kewda water if used.

Serve hot with rice or Kashmiri Roti (bread)

Kashmiri Garam Masala:
30 g (1 oz.) black cummin seeds
125 g (4 oz.) brown cardamom pods
30 g (1 oz.) black peppercorns
30 g. (1oz.) cinnamon sticks
30g (1 oz.) whole cloves
12 blades mace
2 whole nutmegs

Note: Kewda water has a fragrant essence hard to describe and is added at the end of cooking to perfume the dish.

This is from "A Taste of Kashmir" by Geeta Samatani. Published in London in 1995

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