Everyday Indian

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Papaya Chicken
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon asafetida
  • 2 tablespoons grated garlic
  • 2 tablespoons grated ginger
  • 1 green chili, finely chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon Spanish paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut in small cubes
  • 1/4 cup low-fat, plain yogurt
  • 1 cup cubed ripe papaya
Place the oil, fenugreek seeds, and asafetida in a nonstick skillet over medium heat and cook for 10 seconds. Add the garlic, ginger, and green chili, and cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Increase the heat to medium-high, add the onion, and saute for 4 minutes until caramelized. Add the whole cumin seeds, ground cumin, coriander, turmeric, cardamom, paprika, and salt, and cook for 10 seconds.

Add the chicken and cook until almost done, about 8 minutes. Stir in the yogurt and cook until chicken is fully done, another 2 minutes. Add papaya chunks, and remove from heat. Serve over rice or with naan.

Tandoori Quesadillas

  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon grated garlic
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 1/4 cup tandoori paste
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 cup low-fat plain yogurt
  • 6 large whole wheat tortillas
  • 3/4 cup grated mozzarella cheese
Place the oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat and saute the onion, garlic, and ginger for 3 minutes. Add the tandoori paste and cook for 1 minute. Add the chicken and cook until it's almost cooked through, about 8 minutes. Add the yogurt and cook until the chicken is completely cooked through, another 2 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400° F. Place one tortilla on a baking sheet and spread one-third of the chicken mixture on it, spreading it evenly over the entire tortilla. Sprinkle 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese over the top and cover it with another tortilla. Repeat with the remaining ingredients. Bake until the cheese is melted, about 3 to 5 minutes. Cut into 6 wedges and serve with any kind of chutney.

Red Pepper Soup with Toasted Cumin Seeds

  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 teaspoon asafetida
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons grated garlic
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon Spanish paprika
  • 1 pound red bell peppers, sliced
  • 1/2 cup organic vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
Combine the oil, asafetida, mustard seeds, and cumin seeds in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and cook for 10 seconds. Stir in the onion and garlic, and cook for 3 minutes. Add the garam masala and paprika and cook for 1 minute. Mix in the red peppers and cook for 2 minutes. Add stock and broth and cook over medium-low heat for 5 minutes.

Remove from the heat and place the mixture in a blender. Process until completely smooth. Serve in individual bowls, topping each serving with 1 tablespoon of grated parmesan cheese.

Excerpted from Everyday Indian: 100 Fast, Fresh, and Healthy Recipes by Bal Arneson. Now available at amazon.com.