Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Ginger Cinnamon Cream Chicken Curry

If you follow our blog regularly, you probably already know that we love Chicken Curry! I have a few curry recipes in our blog as you may have noticed. Now, this particular recipe was inspired by an Indian and Pakistani dish called "Pasanda"- a mild and creamy curry dish which I have discovered through one of my cookbooks. However, this recipe has evolved so much that I cannot in good conscience call it a Pasanda Curry when this version is so far remote from what the original version is. For starters, a pasanda would never have fruits in it though it always has almonds and that I retained. Also, in a Pasanda the meat is marinated in yogurt with spices and then fried. I do neither and I use cream instead of yogurt. Besides, curry is not really the main ingredient here though it can be used. It's Cinnamon, Ginger and Coriander that really give the chicken its lovely flavor though the curry powder (or chili powder) along with paprika, ginger and turmeric give the dish a lovely glowing yellow color once everything is mixed in. Hence, the birth of this Ginger Cinnamon Cream Chicken with Pineapple and Raisins. I love this dish and am proud of this. I have served this to many guests and they have loved it. Think of this dish as a great introduction to someone who is scared to try a real hot curry. This is pretty mild but since it's cooked with many spices - it is surely full of flavor. The addition of the fruits is what sets this apart - you bite into the savory creamy chicken and then suddenly your taste buds get acquainted with the sweet flavor from the raisins and pineapple and all these contrasting flavors just marry so well. I encourage you to try this and let me know if you like it. Most of all, it's such an easy dish to do. If you know Manila Spoon, we like dishes that are easy to make but does not compromise on taste. Enjoy!


1 Tbsp Oil
3 Tbsps Butter
5 Garlic cloves, crushed
1 Medium Onion, chopped
1 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and chopped (or 1/2 tsp ground ginger)
1 ½ tsp Ground Cinnamon
1 tsp Ground Coriander
½ tsp each Paprika, Turmeric, Curry or Chili powder
1 Lb Boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 large pieces), cubed
1 cup Heavy cream
½ cup Water
¾-1 tsp Salt or to taste
½ cup sliced Almonds, divided
¾ cup Raisins 
¾ cup Pineapple Chunks (drained)
Garam Masala, for sprinkling (optional)


Heat the oil in a deep pan. When the oil gets warm, melt the butter in it.

Sauté the garlic in the melted butter briefly until aromatic. Add the onion and fresh ginger and cook for about 3 mins or until the onion begins to soften. If using ground ginger, just add it with the other spices.

Lower the heat and add the spices. Let the spices sizzle for a few seconds then add the chicken and coat with the spices. Once the chicken is fully coated/glazed add the cream, water, salt and half the almonds. Stir. Raise the heat to bring it to a high simmer. Cover then gently simmer for about 20 minutes.

During the last 5 minutes, add the raisins and the drained pineapple chunks. Cook until the 20 minutes are completed or until chicken is tender and the pineapples and raisins are fully heated through. Sprinkle with Garam Masala (optional). 

Just before serving, garnish with the remaining almonds. Enjoy with rice. While this is great on the day it is made, it is even better the next day so if you can wait, refrigerate it overnight and have it the next day. The recipes doubles easily. Have this with rice, naturally!

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