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Coconut Chicken with Cashews | www.tasteandtellblog.com

I felt truly sorry for my husband last night. You might remember, but I mentioned that my husband doesn’t care for Indian food. So when I chose and Indian cookbook for this month, I was being a bit selfish. I assumed that I would be eating alone these nights, but secretly, I’m hoping my husband will try one of these dishes and change his mind. And I really wish he would have tried this dish last night, because he really did miss out.

I have to admit that I didn’t really feel like making this last night. But the pressure was on for me to post today, and I didn’t want to put it off. (While there is a lot of pressure associated with the Cookbook of the Month posts, I’m also grateful for them so that I am forced to cook from these books!) I had actually been having a bad day, and I didn’t feel like eating at all. But I got into the kitchen, and was then reminded how calming and therapeutic cooking is. And when I took my first bite, all of my cares just faded away. Now, I don’t eat Indian food often since my husband doesn’t like it, but this was just as good as any dish I’ve had at any restaurant. And I think that that is sometimes hard to achieve at home. But this recipe nailed it. I did have to change a few things, though, just to make it work with what I had:

  • I couldn’t find coriander seeds or cumin seeds, so I went ahead and just used ground spices for both. I’m sure it would have been fantastic with the whole seeds, but this definitely worked in a pinch!
  • The grocery store I went to also didn’t have unsweetened coconut. But I really wanted the coconut, so I used sweetened. I’m all for a little sweetness thrown in!
  • I wasn’t sure what kind of chiles to use, so I just used some dried chiles de arbol that I already had at home.
  • Be careful when opening up the food processor after grinding all the spice mix. Those chiles will burn your eyes. (Unfortunately I learned from experience…)
  • I put the cilantro on top expressly for the pictures, but those bites with the cilantro ended up being my favorite. I would highly suggest putting more cilantro on top!
Recipe Rating: 4.75 out of 5

Coconut Chicken with Cashews | www.tasteandtellblog.com

Coconut Chicken with Cashews

from Indian Home Cooking

serves 4

total time: about an hour

1 cup raw or roasted cashews, plus 1/4 cup roasted cashews, for serving
4 whole dried red chiles
a 1-inch piece cinnamon stick
6 whole cloves
3 tablespoons coriander seeds
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
8 garlic cloves
a 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut, or 1/4 cup ground raw or roasted cashews
1/3 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut crosswise in thirds
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

Process 1 cup of the raw cashews to a powder in a food processor.

Combine chilies, cinnamon stick, cloves, coriander, cumin, onion, garlic, ginger, coconut, and 3/4 cup of the ground cashews in a large saucepan or casserole over low heat. Cook, stirring, until the cashews and coconut have turned light golden, about 10 minutes. Cool and process to a paste in a food processor.

Wipe out the casserole and put over medium heat. Add the oil, the spice paste, and the black pepper. Cook, stirring, until mixture is cooked. As the spices begin to stick, add water, about 1 teaspoon at a time, and scrape the bottom of the pan with the spoon to pull up the browned bits and keep the spices from burning.

Add the remaining ground cashews and cook, stirring, 5 more minutes. Add chicken and cook, stirring, until it turns opaque, about 5 minutes.

Add water and the salt, bring to a boil, turn the heat down, and simmer, partially covered, until the chicken is tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Taste for salt and sprinkle with the remaining ¼ cup roasted cashews. Serve hot.

Serve over rice, if desired.

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11 Responses to Cookbook of the Month Recipe – Coconut Chicken with Cashews

  1. Bethany Park says:

    The spices in that paste sound amazing! Sorry for your husband… but I'm really excited for the recipes you'll be posting in May!!

  2. Kim says:

    This coconut chicken sounds delicious and comforting. I know that I would just love it:D

    My husband is a picky eater too, so I definitely understand. I hope that you can get your husband to come around to Indian food. It's definitely a very tasty cuisine.

  3. Happy Cook says:

    I am sure your hubby indeed missed a delicous dinner, pity he don't like the indian cusine.
    Chicken looks really delish, you can give this to me any time.
    I love cilantro and i add them but hubby and daughter don't like them too much they like it if i don't exagerate, so i add more for me on my plate, I am curious to know if your hubby will eat any of the indian dish you make this month, never knows he might like it also 🙂

  4. Tia says:

    i really like your cookbook of the mo. posts. keep it up! this chicken looks good but I think my family would find it too fragrant, although I would love to try it.

  5. Joanne says:

    This is essentially what it would be like if I ever tried cooking Indian food for my parents. They would probably run!

    This dish looks so delicious though! I'm not sure how he could resist.

  6. grace says:

    DEFINITELY more cilantro! coconut, chicken, cashews, cilantro, chiles, cinnamon, cloves–i love all of these and i love alliteration. yes, that sound you just heard was me squealing with delight. 🙂

  7. Miss Meat and Potatoes says:

    I always believe it's okay to be a little selfish when you're the one cooking:) This looks delish – I love Indian and have this cookbook too. Thanks for sharing and have a great weekend!


  8. Sook says:

    Coconut chicken is definitely one of my faves. Your recipe looks delicious, especially with cashew nuts. Yum!

  9. Lori says:

    I love your idea of cookbook of the month. I so need to do that. My bookshelves are brimming with cookbooks that are feeling rather neglected.

    This dish sounds especially good to me as I have a pound of cashews in my freezer. Thank you for some great ideas.

  10. Trendsetters says:

    lovely chicken recipe

  11. kjanzen says:

    I just discovered your blog, and I'm thrilled bc I have been looking for a good coconut chicken recipe. I hear you on making something that you don't think you're husband will like, but secretly hoping he'll try it and a miracle will happen 🙂 I do it all.the.time. It doesn't usually work!
    Great blog!

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