Hi all! I’m back from a trip round Namibia’s biggest wildlife sanctuary, Etosha National Park. It was pretty ace, I saw all the African animals you might hope to see - zebras, elephants, lions, rhinos and my new favorite the brazen warthog. I also saw a lot of dinner buffets in the lodges that had me craving a good home cooked feed. So, over the last few days I’ve been doing heaps of cooking and I think this Cape Chicken Curry has been the highlight.
It’s a recipe inspired by a traditional Afrikaans cookbook I bought a few weeks ago called the Great Boerkos Book by Dine can Zyl. Dine writes that Afrikaans food is a combo of Dutch, Portuguese, French, German, Asian, Madagascan and African cooking. That might sound pretty wild but in fact it’s quite tame, country style food; pies, roasts, stews and puddings but with a spicy bent. That’s not to say I don’t like it! I think Afrikaans food is mostly delicious, as this curry shows. The spice is quite mellow so it’s got more in common with country captain than tikka masala. The chutney is stirred into the sauce rather than served alongside, so there’s quite a bit of sweetness that goes nicely with the chilli and crunchy toasted almonds. I’ve taken many liberties with the original recipe, so this is a pretty loose, inauthentic adaption, enjoy!
Cape Chicken Curry
I added a pinch of tumeric and a pinch of cinnamon to the rice I served with this.
Serves 4750g chicken thighs
2 tbs seasoned flour
2 tbs olive oil
2 sliced onions, sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 knob of ginger, grated
1 tablespoon garam masala
5 cardamom pods, crushed
1 tsp chili flakes
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp cumin, ground
1 tsp cinnamon, ground
1 chopped tomato
2 cups of water
1 1/2 tbs chutney
Salt and pepper
1/2 a cup of slivered almonds, toasted
Coriander leaves, to serve
1. Heat the olive oil in a big frypan or casserole dish over medium. Toss the chicken thighs in the seasoned flour and shake off the excess.
2. Without crowding the pan, fry the chicken pieces for around two minutes on each side, or until browned. Set aside and scrape out any burnt bits from the pan. Add the onions to the pan and cook for around ten minutes, stirring occasionally. Add a bit of salt, then put the garlic and ginger in and cook for two minutes.
3. Add the spices and chilli, cook while stirring, for about three minutes. Add the tomato and cook for a few minutes.
4. Pour in two cups of water, the chutney, a little salt and pepper and bring the mix to the boil. Lower the heat to low and return the chicken pieces to the pan.
5. Cook for 30 - 40 minutes, turning the pieces half way or until the chicken is cooked through. Taste for seasoning, you might also like to add a bit more chutney or chili.
6. Serve with rice, toasted almonds, coriander and cucumber slices.