I am a big fan of Indian food, although I have to admit that my knowledge of cooking that cuisine is rather lacking. Often I find myself just kind of playing around, inspired by the flavors of that country. I can’t really call this an authentic Indian dish for a couple of reasons, the biggest being that I have never come across an Indian recipe that includes rhubarb, but the flavors, as well as some of the techniques were inspired by my limited knowledge of Indian cooking.
Indian Inspired Grilled Chicken
6 each Chicken breasts, boneless, skinless (approximately 2 1/2 to 3 pounds)
1/2 cup Plain yogurt (make sure it is not sweetened)
3 Tbl. Indian or Middle Eastern inspired seasoning mix (I used 2 Tbl. Garam Masala and 1 Tbl. Turkish Seasoning, both from Penzey’s Spices)
Mix the seasoning and the yogurt together until well combined. Add the chicken breasts and massage well until all the chicken is thoroughly coated with the yogurt mixture. Cover and allow to marinate at least 2 hours. Four hours is even better. Meanwhile make the Rhubarb Chutney.
Spicy Rhubarb Chutney
2 Tbl. Vegetable oil
1/4 tsp. Cumin seeds, whole
1/2 tsp. Fennel seeds, whole
6 pods Green Cardamon, seeds removed from pods (optional but highly suggested)
1 medium Onion, peeled and diced
2″ piece Ginger, peeled and cut into short julienne
1-2 each Jalapenos, seeds removed and cut into short julienne
1/4 tsp. Fenugreek, ground (optional)
1/4 tsp. Turmeric, ground
4 cups Rhubarb, diced
1/4 cup Red wine vinegar
1/2-3/4 cup Sugar (depending on how tart the rhubarb is)
1/2 cup (packed) Raisins
Grind the cumin, fennel seed and cardamon seeds. In a nonreactive saucepot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the cumin, fennel and cardamon and cook until the seeds start to pop. Add the ginger, jalapeno and onion and cook for 1 minute. Add the fenugreek and turmeric and cook 2 minutes longer. Add the remaining ingredients, bring to a boil and cook until the rhubarb has broken down, the ginger is tender and the chutney starts to stick to the bottom of the pan. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Can be served any time after cooking but the taste will be improved if allowed to sit for at least a few hours or overnight.
To grill the chicken, heat your grill to medium high and place chicken on the grill. No need to scrape off the yogurt. Grill until chicken is cooked through but still moist (there’s nothing worse than dried out chicken breast!). Depending on the size of the breasts and the heat of your grill it should take anywhere from 8 to 15 minutes.
There should be no pink left but the breast should still be juicy. For those that prefer to temp things then it should read 165°F at the thickest part of the breast. Serve with chutney and basmati rice for a wonderful Indian inspired spring meal.