1 1/2 cinnamon sticks
4 whole cloves
4 green cardamom pods
8 black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 medium onion, sliced thin
4 large cloves garlic, pureed with 1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, pureed with 2 teaspoons water
6 chicken thighs, skinned and cut into bite sized pieces
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoons ground turmeric
salt to taste
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 cup coconut milk
1 cup water
1 jalapeno pepper, stemmed, seeded, cut in half lengthwise
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves
1/2 cup Indian split peas
- Heat oil in a large skillet or soup kettle over medium high heat until hot.
- add the spice blend to the oil, stirring with a wooden spoon until the cinnamon stick unfurls and cloves pop (about 5 seconds).
- Stir in onion to the skillet and saute until softened, about 3 to 4 minutes.
- Stir in garlic, ginger, chicken, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and yogurt. Cook, stirring constantly, until liquid evaporates, oil separates and turns orange, and spices begin to fry (about 5 to 7 minutes).
- Once spices begin to smell cooked, stir in cilantro, then add the water, coconut milk, and halapeno. Season with salt to taste.
- Bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat. Cover and continue to simmer until the meat is tender (about 20 to 30 minutes).
- Add Indian split peas, and cook until tender (about another 15 minutes).
- Serve hot with rice.