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Quick Chicken Vindaloo


by Dawn Yanagihara from Fine Cooking Oct/Nov 2009.

Some substitutions are written in but not suggested, best just as the recipe is. Mis en place!

Serves 4 – 6, Prep time:  10 mins., Cook time: 30 mins.

Ingredients & Prep

  1. 1½ TBS curry powder

  2. 2 tsp hot paprika (substitute a scant ¼ tsp cayenne)

  3. Freshly ground black pepper

  4. 1½ lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 3/4- to 1-inch pieces

  5. 8 medium cloves garlic, minced (don’t be afraid of the garlic, does not overpower)

  6. 4 TBS red wine vinegar

  7. Kosher salt

  8. 2 TBS canola oil

  9. 1 medium yellow onion, cut in half and thinly sliced

  10. 1 TBS grated fresh ginger

  11. 1 (14½ oz). can diced tomatoes, drained, RESERVE 1/3 cup of the juice

  12. 3 TBS chopped fresh cilantro (substitute parsley if you don’t like or have cilantro)


  1. Make spice mixture: In a small bowl, stir the curry powder, paprika, and ¾ tsp black pepper.

  2. Season chicken: Put the chicken in a medium nonreactive bowl, sprinkle with 1 TBS of the spice mixture, about half of the garlic, 2 TBS of the vinegar, and ¾ tsp salt; toss to coat. Set aside at room temperature.

  3. Sauté: Heat the oil in a 10 to 11 inch straight-sided sauté pan over high heat until shimmering. Add the onion and ¼ tsp salt and cook, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until it softens and begins to brown around the edges, 4 to 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium high, add the ginger, the remaining garlic, and the remaining spice mixture and cook, stirring, until fragrant and well combined, about 45 seconds.

  4. Boil & simmer: Add the tomatoes and mix to combine, scraping the bottom of the pan with the spoon. Stir in the seasoned chicken, reserved tomato juice, remaining 2 TBS vinegar, and 2/3 cup water. Bring to a boil, cover partially, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is tender and cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes. Taste it and season with salt and pepper if needed.Serve sprinkled with the cilantro.

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