Braising (korma) is an important technique in Moghul cooking, the process of braising is very similar to the Western method, with one difference – the braising liquid used in korma is much thicker (it includes yogurt, cream and/or fruit and nut butters). It yields a rich, velvety sauce that heavily coats the meats and vegetables. Serve with basmati rice and salad of watercress and seasoned apple.
1 1/2 inch-piece fresh peeled, ginger
4 cloves garlic
6 Tbls. vegetable oil
2 bay leaves
1 2-inch cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
1 medium onion
1 tsp. ground cardamom
1 Tbls. ground coriander
1 Tbls. ground cumin
1 large can plum tomatoes, chopped
4 pounds skinless chicken breast
1 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
1 tsp. kosher salt
6 Tbls. heavy whipping cream
Chop ginger and garlic into chucks. Add to an electric blender with about 1/4 c. water. Blend to a smooth paste.
Chop onion. Put oil in a large frying pan. Turn heat to high. When it is very hot add bay leaves, cinnamon stick, and cumin seeds. Stir a couple of times and add onion. Cook for a few more minutes until onion softens. Add paste from blender and ground cardamom, coriander, and cumin. Stir and turn heat off.
Chop tomatoes and cut chicken into small cubes. Turn heat back on to high and add tomatoes, chicken, salt and cayenne pepper, if using. Give it a stir and then add 1 1/2 c. water. Bring to a boil. Cover, turn the heat to medium and let cook for about 25 minutes, stir once or twice. Remove the cover, add cream and cook on high heat for another 8 minutes or until sauce has thickened a bit. Serve with rice.
This dish can be made ahead of time. It reheats well.