Balti Recipe with Chicken Breast

By Chris Ridder

We think that the chicken balti dish that we love in the UK was first invented in Birmingham and because of it's popularity it was on menus widely by the 1990s. The word "balti" is actually referring to the dish the curry is usually served on. Below is one of my favourite balti recipes, I hope you enjoy.

Serves 4. Ready in 1 hour, 15 minutes.

Curry Sauce Ingredients: Olive oil, 1 onion, 4 cloves garlic, 4cm piece of ginger, 2 green chillies, teaspoon turmeric powder, teaspoon cumin seed, teaspoon coriander seed, 1 teaspoon tomato puree

The Chicken Balti Ingredients 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, olive oil, 2 green peppers, 2 red peppers, 2 onions, 3 green chillies, 2 red chillies, 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, 1 teaspoons paprika powder, 1 teaspoons tumeric powder, teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon tomato puree, 1 teaspoon garam masala, salt.

I have split the method into two separate threads - one first for creating the curry sauce, and then another for the main meal. I think this just makes it easier to follow.

The Curry Sauce:

1. Add a little olive oil into a saucepan and place over a high heat. Peel the onion, dice it into small pieces and add to the pan. Stir for a couple of minutes allowing the onion to soften.

2. Crush the garlic cloves into the pan and stir. Deseed the green chillies and then chop into little chunks and add these to the pan too. Next grate the ginger in, and stir it all up well.

3. Turn the heat down low and stir the mixture for another quarter of an hour.

4. After 15 minutes add the spices - teaspoon of turmeric powder, teaspoon of cumin seed and teaspoon of coriander seed. Stir for 4 minutes.

5. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the contents to cool. Once cooled add the mixture to a blender and add 125ml of cold water, and the tomato puree. Blend well until you have a really smooth paste.

6. Pour your curry sauce into the pan again and put on a very low heat. As you prepare the main part of the recipe occasionally stir the sauce which should turn an orangey brown colour.

The main part of the chicken balti:

1. Prepare the vegetables - peel and roughly chop the onion, wash and chop the peppers and remove the seeds from the chillies and slice.

2. Prepare the chicken breast meat by cutting them into cubes.

3. Add some oil into a wok and set over a heat set to high. Add the peppers and fry for a few minutes allowing them to soften. Don't allow them to burn, and after a couple of minutes or so set them aside for later.

4. In a bowl add the cubes of chicken breast and sprinkle with salt to season. Then add a little more oil to the wok and add the chicken. Fry until they are thoroughly cooked through and then remove the chicken from the wok and set these aside too.

5. Add the onion and chilli to the wok (with some more oil if you need). Also add the cumin seeds while you're at it, and stir fry this for a few minutes until the onion is tender. Do not allow the onion to start to turn brown.

6. When the onion is soft add the paprika, turmeric and cinnamon and then continue to stiry fry for another 45 seconds or so.

7. Add the chicken you cooked earlier back into the wok and now you can also add the curry sauce, along with a teaspoon of tomato puree.

8. Bring the curry to the boil before lowering the heat and leaving it to cook for 15 minutes, stirring occassionally.

9. After 15 minutes add the peppers back into the curry and mix well, and also add the garam masala.

10. Cook for another 15 minutes adding boiling water if the sauce is becoming too thick.

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