Quite honestly, the only thing Egyptian about this recipe is the cardamom. Perhaps also the chicken. They eat a lot of chicken in Egypt, many of them grown in people’s backyards or their apartments, if you live in a city.
That said, I was wandering through an old cookbook I had made that was a collection of remembered recipes from friends and family. I stumbled on this one. Actually, I stumbled on the recipe that inspired this current effort. The original is for Egyptian kebabs (much more Egyptian). Atypically, I didn’t feel like firing up the old George Forman grill. I wanted something with a little sauce.
Can I say that I forgot how delicious this recipe is? And easy? Sure, there are more ingredients than I usually use, but it’s mostly ground spices. People say that spices lose their oomph over time. I say, just add more spice if you think your spice is too old.
Egyptian inspired chicken
- Either 3 chicken thighs OR 2 chicken breasts—deboned and skinless
- 1 single serving size plain yoghurt (any kind—greek, hi-fat, lo-fat, soy, your choice)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard seed powder
- 2-3 teaspoons curry powder (any kind—I used Jamaican. It was wonderful and multicultural!)
- ½ teaspoon cardamom
- Juice from one lemon
- 2 teaspoons vinegar
- 1-2 cloves crushed garlic
- Cut chicken into bite-sized squares.
- Combine all other ingredients.
- Mix in chicken squares and let marinate at least 30 minutes. As always, longer is better.
- Saute with a little oil in frying pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally for 10-15 minutes—depending on size of squares—until chicken is cooked through.
- Serve on some kinds of grain (couscous, rice, quinoa) or just plain. I served it with a simple tomato salad. So good, you’ll eat with a spoon!
Note: To make kebabs, substitute 1-2 Tablespoons of yoghurt in marinade. Thread on skewers with small tomatoes and thinly sliced onion. Broil slowly turning occasionally, about 10 minutes until done.