Butter Chicken with Spiced Cashews
I used to feel pretty conflicted about butter chicken. It’s pretty decadently delicious, but it’s so often poorly cooked and then doused with way too much cream to compensate. I changed my tune while writing this book, since almost every friend who came to dinner while I was testing recipes asked/dropped hints/begged for butter chicken. I cut down the amount of cream, so it isn’t as heavy, and added some—not traditional but highly recommended—puréed chipotle chiles in adobo sauce for a deeper, more complex, smokier flavor.
Cooking MethodPressure Cooker
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) ghee or vegetable oil
- 2 cups (500 mL) finely diced onions
- 1 teaspoon (5 mL) kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) minced ginger
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) ground turmeric
- 3 teaspoons (15 mL) Kashmiri chili powder, divided
- 1 teaspoon (5 mL) Garam Masala, store-bought
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, puréed or finely chopped
- 1 cup (250 mL) water
- 1 (14-ounce) can (398 mL) diced tomatoes (with juice)
- 2 pounds (1 kg) boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 2-inch (5 cm) pieces
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) raw cashew pieces
- 3/4 cup (175 mL) heavy or whipping (35%) cream
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) chopped fresh cilantro, divided
Using the Sauté function on High, heat the ghee in the inner pot for about 1 minute, until shimmering. Add the onions and salt; cook, stirring occasionally, for about 4 minutes, until the onions are softened. Add the ginger, garlic, turmeric, 2 teaspoons (10 mL) chili powder, garam masala and tomato paste; cook, stirring constantly, for about 1 minute, until fragrant. Stir in the chipotles in adobo sauce, water, tomatoes (with juice) and chicken.
Secure the lid and cook on high pressure for 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, toast the cashews in a small, dry skillet over medium heat, for 3 minutes, tossing the pan frequently, until lightly browned. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon (5 mL) chili powder and toss to coat. Set aside.
Once the chicken is cooked, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then quick-release the remaining pressure.
Remove the lid. If the sauce is watery, use the Sauté function on High to simmer the mixture for 5 minutes, until the sauce is reduced to the desired consistency. Stir in the cream and 1/4 cup (60 mL) cilantro. Transfer the chicken and sauce to a serving dish, garnish with the remaining cilantro and cashews and serve.
Courtesy of The Complete Indian Instant Pot Cookbook by Chandra Ram 2018 www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with permission. Available where books are sold.