November 12, 2010

Chicken Korma with Peas and... Naan from Wal-Mart??

For supper on Thursday, I wanted to make a simple, basic, no-fuss Indian recipe, because after a long week, I didn't want to spend all evening making dinner.   With that goal in mind, I made up a very basic chicken curry, and decided to toss in some peas as well, to give the meal a better nutritional range (not to mention a bit of color) without making another dish.  Along with chicken in a rich curry gravy, we had basmati rice and naan... but there was something unusual about the naan.  Namely, where I bought it.

Who'd have thought you could find naan in the bakery of a Wal-Mart in a small Iowa town?

Maybe Wal-Mart's been carrying bakery naan for awhile, at least in some of the bigger stores or more diverse markets, but this was the first time I've noticed it.   I was walking past the deli and bakery section when it caught my eye.  I literally did a double-take, because at first I couldn't believe my eyes.  As it turned out, they actually had two types of naan:  the basic tandoori naan I purchased, plus garlic naan.

Even more surprising, it's pretty good.   Not as good as what one would expect from a good Indian restaurant, but nonetheless a quite serviceable naan.  All it took was a couple minutes in the oven.  And the price wasn't bad, either.

We support Wal-Mart's trend toward carrying a more diverse range of products, and especially a more ethnically diverse range of food products, so I'm sure we'll be buying this again.  It went well with tonight's meal.  The chicken korma was also good.   Despite a fair bit of chili powder, the flavor is quite mellow, due to ample amounts of cream and almonds that balance out the heat.

Speaking of the chicken korma, we've got some pictures, plus the recipe, below. 

Chicken Korma with Peas

yield = 6 servings

1/2            cup sliced almonds
2               tablespoons butter, ghee or vegetable oil
1               large white onion, chopped fine
5               green cardamom pods, crushed
5               whole cloves
2               teaspoons hot chili powder
1 1/2         teaspoons ground cumin
1               teaspoon ground coriander
1/2            teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2            teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1/2            teaspoon salt
1/4            teaspoon ground allspice
2               tablespoons freshly-grated ginger
1 1/2         teaspoon minced garlic
4               boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced into
                 bite-size pieces
3               tablespoons tomato paste
1               cup chicken broth or stock
3/4            cup heavy cream
2               cups frozen peas

Dry-roast the almonds in a small skillet, stirring often, until golden brown.   Reserve 1/3 of the almonds, and finely grind the rest in a spice grinder, food processor or mortar. 

Add the oil to a Dutch oven and heat on medium high until shimmering.  Add the onion, cloves and cardamom pods and cook until the onions have started to brown, stirring often.

Stir in the chili powder, cumin, coriander, turmeric, black pepper, salt and allspice and cook until fragrant (about 30 seconds), then add the ginger and garlic and cook another minute.  Add the chicken and stir-fry until the chicken is no longer translucent (about 5 minutes).  Stir in the tomato paste and cook until fragrant, then stir in the chicken broth or stock, cream, frozen peas and ground almonds.  Cook until the liquid has thickened nicely (about 5 minutes), top with the remainder of the almonds and serve. 

Serve atop basmati rice with naan.


  1. Off-topic, but here's the photo as promised:

    Voila, J & J. Excuse the 'plate' - my plates were in the dishwasher and I used my round baking pan as one...

    This was very good - I had to do without a few ingredients (marjoram, beef broth, and walnuts), but it still turned out great with the key ingredients (pasta, onion, garlic, pumpkin, sweet sausage, kale, and parmesan).

  2. Thanks for the pic, Lena! Plate or pan, it still looks great. We're glad the recipe worked out for you.

  3. Oh my goodness! You guys are just too cute! Just read your bios as I was googling for Chicken korma recipes that soak or roast the almonds.

    So glad you're loving your time together cooking and "empty nesting".

    I lived in MN for 25 years and just moved to San Francisco.

    Thanks for a great blog post and story!

  4. Thank you for the kind words, Adria.

    We hope you found a chicken korma recipe that meets your needs, either ours or someone else's.