I am a country girl, through and through. I love living wayyyy out in the sticks. I love it that if I want to wear my work boots with manure on them and dirty old jeans and carhartt jacket into town, no one looks at me funny. My mud-covered pickup truck fits right in here. I love that I only have to brush my hair if I feel like it. I can butcher a chicken but if you asked me for tips on applying eyeshadow I would be utterly clueless.
BUT: boy oh boy oh boy, sometimes I really miss the days of living right in the middle of San Francisco, where I could walk just a few blocks and have my pick of some of the best (and cheapest) ethnic foods I’ve ever tasted, anywhere. Cities are awesome like that. One of my favorite spots was an Indian restaurant called Chutney, on Jones and O’Farrell. When I’m in the city I make a beeline there and get the paneer tikka masala, saffron rice and garlic naan. It’s the stuff of dreams.
I like to be very self-reliant and DIY here in our homestead kitchen (remember last year’s Cook it! projects? we made our own pasta bread butter cheese and so much more), and one of the categories that I haven’t written about yet is: Cooking Exact Replicas Of My Favorite Restaurant Foods. This is one of my favorite categories because I get to eat my favorite foods whenever the craving hits, all without ever having to change into real pants or figure out where I put my keys.
1. The recipe calls for a lot of lemon juice. You may have noticed that it’s winter and there’s tons of lemons hanging around on the trees these days. I made meyer lemon marmalade the other day, but I still have a big bowl of meyer lemons, so what better way to use them up than curry?
3. I was all excited about using my cast-iron grill pan to grill the yogurt-marinated chicken, but I promptly set off the fire alarm. So instead of actually grilling the chicken first, I just threw the raw pieces right into the tomato sauce. I’m sure I was missing some charred flavor, but I also didn’t have to cook dinner in a cloud of smoke. It turned out totally delicious and didn’t really matter that I skipped this step.
4. To serve this properly, it’s best with steamed basmati rice and naan or chapatis, but since we’re lazy and had tortillas we just used those instead.