Chopstick Cinema

Celeste Heiter's Adventures in Asian Food & Film

Recipe: Bihari Chicken Masala

Chopstick Cinema

In years past, many of the Indian main dishes I prepared involved curry powder and coconut milk. But this one was quite different, and pleasantly so. The spices included garam masala, cayenne pepper, garlic, and ginger, in a sauce of tomatoes and onions. Very unlike any Indian food I’ve ever prepared or eaten, but delicious nonetheless.

Bihari Chicken Masala

2 pounds boneless chicken (breasts or thighs), cut into 1-inch strips 3 tablespoons flour 3 tablespoons vegetable oil 6 cloves garlic, finely minced 1 knob ginger root, finely shredded 1 onion, finely chopped 3 medium tomatoes, finely chopped 1 teaspoon garam masala Cayenne pepper to taste 1 teaspoon sugar 1 1/2 cups water Salt to taste 1/2 stick butter, cut into 4 pats Cilantro for garnish

Dredge chicken pieces in flour. Heat oil in a large skillet. Add ginger, garlic, and onions and stir-fry over low heat until just tender. Add chicken pieces and fry, turning occasionally until lightly browned on all sides. Stir in tomatoes, garam masala, cayenne pepper and salt. Add water and stir to mix. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat and simmer until chicken is done and sauce is thickened. Serve chicken and sauce on individual plates. Top each serving with a pat of butter and garnish with cilantro.