How to cook… Chicken and Mushroom Balti

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

The joy of balti cooking is that it mixes and matches different ingredients. If you want it then add it to your dish Add mushrooms to the classic Chicken Balti and, hey presto, you have a Chicken and Mushroom Balti.

What you need…
• 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
• 3 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
• 3cm piece of ginger, peel and cut into small chunks
• 0.5 onion, sliced
• 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
• 600g Base Curry Sauce
• 1 teaspoon garam masala
• 3 Tablespoons chopped coriander
• 600g chicken, cut into small bite-sized pieces
• 200g mushrooms, thinly sliced
• Salt, to taste

Balti Masala
• 1 Tablespoon coriander seeds
• 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
• 3 cardamoms
• 2 cloves
• 3 dried red chillies
• 4 bay leaves


–––––
• 0.5 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon turmeric


How to make it…
1. Dry fry the ingredients of the Balti Masala (except the salt and turmeric) in a heated pan until they release their aromas (about 2 minutes). Grind them to a powder. Add the salt and turmeric, and add some water to form a paste. Set aside.
2. Heat the oil to high heat, add the fenugreek seeds and fry for 15 seconds. They should sizzle immediately. You can test the ghee is hot enough by adding one seed.
3. Turn down the heat, add the garlic and ginger and fry for 2 minutes.
4. Add the onion and fry for 1 minute.
5. Add the Balti Masala, the tomato paste and fry for 3 minutes, adding a little water if needed.
6. Add the Base Curry Sauce, garam masala, 2 Tablespoons of coriander, chicken, and mushrooms, and cook until all the chicken pieces are cooked through (about 10 minutes). Stir frequently, add salt to taste and water if needed.
7. Serve straight away, garnished with the rest of the coriander.

CHEF’S TIP
Experiment with other combinations. Add sweetcorn, peppers, extra garlic, whatever you fancy, to the classic Chicken Balti and you have a combination dish.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken DopiazaAmbot Tik

Heard someone they can eat these easily? It’s a phallacy.

How to cook… Chicken Balti

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

This is the classic Chicken Balti, easy to make and, oh, so quick. Cooked quickly it will produce that distinctive fresh Balti taste and  will make a medium-strength dish. As always with all baltis, serve with a nan.

What you need…
• 0.5 teaspoon sea salt
• 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
• 3 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
• 3cm piece of ginger, peel and cut into small chunks
• 0.5 onion, sliced
• 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
• 600g Base Curry Sauce
• 1 teaspoon garam masala
• 3 Tablespoons chopped coriander
• 800g chicken, cut into small bite-sized pieces
• Salt, to taste

Balti Masala
• 1 Tablespoon coriander seeds
• 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
• 3 cardamoms
• 2 cloves
• 3 dried red chillies
• 4 bay leaves


How to make it…
1. Dry fry the ingredients of the Balti Masala (except the salt and turmeric) in a heated pan until they release their aromas (about 2 minutes). Grind them to a powder. Add the salt and turmeric, and some water to form a paste. Set aside.
2. Heat the oil to high heat, add the fenugreek seeds and fry for 15 seconds. They should sizzle immediately. You can test the ghee is hot enough by adding one seed.
3. Turn down the heat, add the garlic and ginger and fry for 2 minutes.
4. Add the onion and fry for 1 minute.
5. Add the Balti Masala, the tomato paste and fry for 3 minutes, adding a little water if needed.
6. Add the Base Curry Sauce, garam masala, 2 Tablespoons of coriander, and chicken, and cook until all the chicken pieces are cooked through (about 10 minutes). Stir frequently, add salt to taste and water if needed.
7. Serve straight away, garnished with the rest of the coriander.

CHEF’S TIP
The nan bread is delicious if served smothered with butter.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken DopiazaAmbot Tik

Heard someone they can eat these easily? It’s a phallacy.

A place to watch

2. Reviews (Other UK)

Am Kitchen and Bar, Leeds

There can few better surroundings in which to eat a curry than Am Kitchen and Bar. There’s the pay-through-the-teeth grandeur of legendary place like London’s Veeraswamy, of course, or the feet-in-the-sand style of Karma Café in Goa, but right here in the centre of Leeds there is a gem of a curry house.

Based in a former watchmakers, the property is a Listed Building boasting two levels with a large open well in the middle where you can look down on diners below, beautiful chandeliers, and a mind-boggling amount of intricate glass work panels and display cabinets. The necessary contemporary elements needed to operate a restaurant are incorporated into the space well, in particular the way the light grey high-backed chairs offset the dark wood of the tables. But best of all for the Greenwich Curry Club is a superb Greenwich Mean Time clock that takes centre stage over the bar that faces the entrance.

Greenwich Mean Time Clock. It's one of those that's only correct twice a day…

It’d be easy to get distracted from the main reason for being here, yet the Chicken Balti (with extra garlic as requested) delivered that beautiful fresh taste that baltis should and is well priced at £8.55, while there was also no problem adapting a hearty Keema Madras (£8.55) by adding some fresh green chillies. If you’re a starter fan you’ll struggle to find tastier Lamb Chops (£4.25); for a large table of people who can think of a better way to start the communal evening than with a large of pile of these?

By the end of the first bite I’d forgiven the staff for (what appeared to be) a deliberate policy of keeping people waiting at the entrance to ensure the front of house table are always occupied rather than filling up the empty places upstairs. In fact I was rather pleased because Briggate on a Saturday night is ideal for people watching. Coats are a complete no-no even as temperatures plummet. Instead boys seem particularly keen on tops so tight it looks like they’ve just got out the gym and girls on skirts so short that Am Kitchen’s very large Rotis (£1.10 each) would offer more cover.

Am Kitchen and Bar, 24-26 Briggate, Leeds, LS1 6EP. Tel: 0113 242 2626. E-mail: info@amkitchenandbar.com 

Am Kitchen and Bar snapshot

Food ① ② ③ ④

Decor ① ② ③ ④ ⑤

Value ① ② ③ ④

Atmosphere (Saturday night) ① ② ③ ④

Service and friendliness ① ② ③

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