2011 Riesling Experience Chicken Masala


Chicken Masala with Fresh Herbs

  • 2 cups cilantro leaves
  • 1 cup mint leaves
  • 1 jalapeño, coarsely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs (1 3/4 pounds), cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon curry powder
  • ½  teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½  teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/8  teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • Kosher salt
  • Basmati rice, for serving

In a blender, combine the cilantro, mint, jalapeño, garlic, lemon juice and water and puree until smooth.  Season with a little salt.

In a large, deep skillet, heat the oil. Add the onion and cook over moderately high heat, stirring frequently, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken and turmeric and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden in spots, about 7 minutes. Add the remaining spices and cook for 1 minute. Add the cilantro puree and coconut milk, season with salt and bring to a boil. Simmer over low heat until the sauce is slightly reduced and the chicken is tender, about 15 minutes. Serve over basmati rice.

The ever-versatile Applewood Winery Riesling has the wonderful ability to pair with international flavors, and the slightly fruity taste of the wine balances the complex flavors of this dish.  Enjoy!