This is my go-to food to make when we have surprise guests over at the house and have to come up with something quick and delicious that everyone would enjoy. If you don’t have chicken, any other meat including pork, beef or sausages would do just fine. You can also go vegetarian by omitting the meat and adding more vegetables such as sweet potatoes, eggplants and mushrooms, too. There are dozens of different brands of these curry mixes from Japan and Korea. Any brand you can find at the grocery store works with this recipe, some might be sweeter or spicier than others. My favorite part of this dish is the potato, how it gets soft and it deliciously thickens the curry sauce. It’s one of my comfort food growing up.
BakingWithBooks Does Whole30 - “Tandoori” Roast Chicken with Coconut Curry Sauce and Cucumber Tomato Salad
This is a Whole30 compliant version of Tandoori chicken. It is by no means authentic because there is no yogurt, and I don’t have a tandoori oven, but trust me when I say that the flavor is incredible.
Ingredients for the Chicken
1 whole chicken - about 5-6 lbs
2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp paprika
2 tsp turmeric
Equal parts: ground ginger, garam masala, granulated onion and garlic
1-2 tbsp tomato paste
Juice from a lime
1 lime, quartered, 2 whole cloves garlic, and ½ onion for stuffing inside
Extra virgin olive oil and more kosher salt and pepper
Kitchen twine for tying the legs
Ingredients for the Coconut Curry Sauce
½ of a 13.5 fl oz. can of coconut milk
1 ½ tbsp red curry paste
2 sprigs of mint, finely chopped
Juice from ¼ lime and ¼ lemon
½ tsp kosher salt
2 pitted dates
Directions for Chicken
Clean the chicken, removing any giblets and kidneys from the inside and thoroughly pat dry with paper towels.
In one bowl, mix the chili powder, paprika, turmeric together. Add just enough lime juice so that mixture becomes a paste.
Make gashes (not deep) in the chicken skin and slather the paste all over the bird. Each part of the bird should be covered. If you need more paste, feel free to make more.
Marinate in the fridge for about 2 hours.
Make another paste (without lime juice) with the garam masala, ginger, granulated garlic and onion with the tomato paste. This is going to give the chicken incredible flavor along with the intense red color that Tandoori chicken is known for.
Slather this paste all over the front of the chicken and return to marinate for another hour.
Remove the chicken from the fridge and let it come to room temperature for about 30-40 minutes, and preheat your oven to 420 degrees Fahrenheit.
Season the inside of the chicken very generously with kosher salt and pepper. Stuff it with the lime, onion, and garlic, and tie the legs with kitchen twine.
About 5-10 minutes before your bird is ready to go into the oven, heat extra virgin olive oil in a cast iron skillet over high heat. You want it to sizzle when a dash of water is added.
Once the oil is heated, add the bird, breast-side up into the skillet and let sear for about 4-5 minutes.
Place into the oven to roast. Take it out when the breast meat reads 155 degrees Fahrenheit and the thigh meat reads about 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Let the chicken rest before carving for about 20-25 minutes. Make the sauce while you’re doing this.
Directions for Coconut Curry Sauce
Combine all ingredients into a blender and puree until smooth.
Strain through a fine sieve to remove any lumps. Taste for seasoning and adjust to your likeness. The sauce is meant to be rich, slightly spicy, and very faintly sweet.
Garnish with cilantro.
The cucumber and tomato salad is lightly dressed with sea salt, pepper, red vinegar, and light olive oil.
“Like the unmistakable smell of Indian Curry; chicken, braised in butter and complimented graciously with distinct spices found. The slightest sweet smell of strawberries linger, and a dash of Nico-Nico Nii. These smells replicate the aroma of a Japanese lunch in a soba diner at the heart of Akihabara, Japan. The smells are then brought together in perfect harmonious combination with the unforgettable fragrance of the domestic cow, whom of course was left to sow and graze in the grasses…”