Friday, 30 August 2013

Whim victory : Stir Fried chicken with grilled vegetables and cashew nuts

Cooking is all about instincts, I say; instincts... and raw passion. Just feel the love, I say. 

Mostly I stomp into the kitchen, ransack the refrigerator and the shelves and toss up something impromptu. I make the recipe up on the go, adding a pinch of this and a dash of that. Sometimes the experiments end in edible (read inedible) disasters, but mostly the love speaks.

This is one recipe that’s the outcome of crazy whims and those who had it keep asking me for a repeat. It's a simple stir fry really, but with tiny twists and tweaks. 

It was one of those evening a couple of days after I had left my last job (also on a whim) and cooking was my only arm to resist the speedy onset of frustrated boredom. The fridge was stocked with some fresh vegetables brought from the market that very morning and I simply wanted to make a salad. I suddenly fancied a smoky flavour and out came the grill. And before I knew, what was meant to be a healthy snack turned out to be a sinful chicken treat.

Stir Fried chicken with grilled vegetables and cashew nuts 

(Serves 2)
Chicken (boneless) cut into cubes – 500 g
Tomatoes – 2 large
Onions – 2 large (diced)
Bell pepper- 1 large (diced) (You could also used half each of two different colours)
Garlic (whole cloves) – a fistful (depending on your taste really)
Red wine vinegar- 2 tbsp
Thyme (dried if you can’t manage fresh)- 1 tsp
Chili flakes – To taste
Finely chopped Parsley- a few sprigs
Cashew nuts- 100 g (fried in butter)
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste

Sugar - 1/2 tsp
Olive oil – Be generous but if you really care for calories you can make it in as less a table spoon and a half.

Brush the vegetables (
including garlic ) with olive oil and grill them on a charcoal grill (an electric grill would do just fine if you cannot access a charcoal grill), to give it a smoky flavour.
Marinate the chicken pieces with red wine vinegar, thyme, pepper and salt for 40 minutes.
Heat the pan and add olive oil. Caramelize the sugar. Add the marinated chicken and stir fry on high flame until chicken is tender and most of the juices dry out.
Add the vegetables and stir fry. Now add the parsley and nuts. Sprinkle chili flakes and fry some more until oil separates. 
Serving: Serve piping hot on a bed of steamed jasmine rice garnished

 with chopped parsley (optional).

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