Don’t let the spices in this curry put you off, it’s much simpler than you think! The lentils are a great source of protein, and they provide a wonderful sauce when combined with the sweet and sour notes of the tamraind and jaggery! Garnish your curry with some coriander, a dollop of yogurt and serve with pillowy rice, you will not be disappointed!
300g chicken thigh fillets, cut into 2cm pieces
2 tsp ginger, finely minced
4 tsp garlic, finely minced
100g red lentils
600ml chicken stock
2 tbsp rapeseed oil
1 cinnamon stick
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp ground coriander
½ tsp fennel seeds
¼ tsp ground green cardamom
¼ tsp clove powder
½ tsp turmeric
¾ tsp chilli powder
1 tsp dried fenugreek leaves
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp tamarind sauce
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp jaggery (or dark brown sugar)
2 tsp lemon juice
4 heaped tbsp fresh coriander, roughly chopped
- Place the chicken in a bowl with the garlic and ginger, mix to coat it thoroughly and marinate in the fridge for a minimum of 1 hour.
- Rinse the lentils until the water runs clear. Drain the lentils and place in a saucepan with the chicken stock. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes until the lentils are soft and mushy and the liquid has reduced.
- Heat the oil in a saucepan over a medium heat. Add the cinnamon stick sizzle for a few seconds and then add the chicken, followed by the ground cumin, coriander, fennel seeds, chilli powder, turmeric, dried fenugreek, clove, cardamom and salt and cook for 6-7 minutes on a low heat until the chicken is sealed with the spices and beginning to become tender.
- Now add the tamarind sauce, tomato puree, lentils with their cooking liquid and ½ of the fresh coriander. Stir the jaggery and lemon juice through.
- Cook for 10 minutes or until the chicken is tender.
- Taste and add more salt, jaggery or lemon juice if required.
- Sprinkle over the remaining fresh coriander and serve.