Butter Chicken

It’s surprising how fast and easy it is to make butter chicken. Adjust the amount of chile powder to your heat tolerance.
1/4 cup plus 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
8 ounces chicken, cut into chunks
2 medium onions, finely minced
Sea salt
3 tablespoons finely grated ginger
5 garlic cloves, finely grated
3 teaspoons Madras curry powder
2 1/2 teaspoons garam masala
2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1/4 to 1 teaspoon chile powder
Seeds from 4 cardamom pods
One 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes
3 tablespoons plain yogurt
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons almond butter
1/4 cup heavy cream

DirectionsInstructions Checklist
Step 1
In a medium frying pan, heat the 2 teaspoons of vegetable oil. Add the chicken and cook for 1 minute over medium high heat. Turn the chicken, reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and cook for 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and let it rest, covered, for 10 minutes.

Step 2
Meanwhile, in a large frying pan, heat the 1/4 cup of vegetable oil (or ghee). Add the onions and 1 teaspoon of sea salt and cook over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are medium brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.The ginger and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add all of the spices and cook for about 30 seconds, stirring constantly.

Step 3
Stir in the crushed tomatoes, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen any browned bits. Add 1/2 cup of water, reduce the heat to low and simmer slowly for about 15 minutes, or until the sauce thickens and begins to splatter.

Step 4
Remove from the heat and allow the sauce to cool for a couple of minutes. Transfer the sauce to a blender and blend for 1 minute, or until very smooth.

Step 5
Return the sauce to the pan but leave off the heat. Stir in the plain yogurt, brown sugar, almond butter and cream. Stir in the chicken and season with sea salt to taste.

If you are using a regular blender (instead of a high-speed blender) and you want a very smooth sauce, simply strain the sauce through a fine mesh sieve after blending.

Serve With
Basmati rice and naan, if desired.