Thursday, July 15, 2010

Angry Chicken

Admit it.  When you hear of a dish called Angry Chicken, you can't help but sit up and wonder... what exactly does an angry chicken taste like?

Well, apparently pretty damn good.  Abe declared it one of the best chickens I've ever made and Jimi requested that we have it once a week.  I'll take the compliment.

I had really wanted to make the dish solely on the name.  But one glance at the Indian-inspired ingredients made me quickly realize that it was more than just spicy chicken.  The boys agreed that it was like Buffalo Wild Wings meets India. 

The recipe comes from a chef who has a restaurant in Mumbai, India and apparently it's their most popular dish.  The recipe looks like it could be a bit elaborate, but it really came together nicely.   You will need to plan a bit ahead to allow the meat to marinate.

The ingredient list calls for lots of whole spices ground down with a pestle and mortar.  Yeah, no.  While I do have a few of the ingredients in their whole form, I'm 32 weeks pregnant and not about to hand grind anything right now.  So, if you're like me (well, perhaps not the pregnant part), you can just use the spices already in their ground form.

Garam masala is a delightful Indian spice mix that can be found in any spice shop or Indian market.  It makes all the difference in taste, so I'd really suggest getting some (or look up a recipe for making it at home).  I use it a lot in dishes, so I always have some on hand.

Last minute I omitted the blistered chilies step, which I now regret.  I will for sure do it next time and definitely if I serve this to company.  I think they really are the "angry" in the Angry Chicken.  I also omitted the fried noodles part (laziness), but I can see how this would add a bit of drama to the dish.

I got this recipe from


Angry Chicken
Serves 4

2 (3 1/2 to 4 pound) chickens quartered (I got mine ready packaged as whole chickens cut up)
Spicy Yogurt Marinade, recipe follows
2 cups chicken stock
24 assorted long fresh hot green and red chile peppers
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 bunch Fried Rice Noodles, recipe follows
Lime wedges, for serving

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Trim any excess fat from the chicken. Rinse and pat dry. Place the chicken quarters in a large bowl. Measure out 1 cup of the Spicy Yogurt Marinade and reserve for the sauce; refrigerate in a small covered container.
Pour the rest of the marinade over the chicken. Turn the pieces to make sure they are all well-coated. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 and up to 24 hours.

Remove the chicken from the marinade and arrange the pieces on 1 or 2 half-sheet pans or large baking sheets. Discard the chicken marinade.

Roast for 40 minutes, until the chicken is tender and lightly browned and the juices run clear when the thighs are pricked with the tip of a small knife. Transfer the pieces to a platter and tent with foil to keep warm.
While the chicken is roasting, make the sauce. Boil the chicken stock in a medium saucepan over high heat until it is reduced to 1 cup. Whisk in the reserved 1 cup Spicy Yogurt Marinade and cook just until heated through. Do not boil, or the yogurt will separate. Keep the sauce warm.

As soon as the chickens are done, preheat the broiler. Toss the chiles with the oil to coat lightly and spread them out on a broiler rack or small baking sheet. Broil the chiles about 4 inches from the heat, turning them a couple of times, until they are blistered and lightly browned, about 5 minutes.

To serve, layer the chicken and chiles on a large platter. Pour the sauce around the chicken. Top with the Fried Rice Noodles. Serve with lime wedges to squeeze over the chicken.

Spicy Yogurt Marinade:

1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/4 teaspoon cardamom seeds
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups hot sauce (recommended: Frank's)
1 1/3 cups plain yogurt
1/2 cup heavy cream or half and half
1/3 cup soy sauce

To make the marinade, grind the peppercorns, cumin, coriander seeds, and cardamom in a spice grinder or use a mortar and pestle (or use ground). Transfer to a medium bowl. Add the chili powder, garam masala, and salt. Add the hot sauce, yogurt, cream, and soy sauce and whisk until smooth and well blended.

Yield: about 3 1/2 cups

Fried Rice Noodles:

  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1 bundle thin rice noodles (mai fun)
Add vegetable oil to reach about 2 inches up the sides of a large saucepan or a wok. Heat the oil over high heat to 340 degrees F. Separate 1 bundle of thin rice noodles into 2 portions. Working with 1 portion at a time, add the noodles to the oil. They will puff up almost immediately. Using a large wire skimmer, transfer to paper towels to drain.

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