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Video: Exotic one-pot meals

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    >> right after this.

    >>> in "today's" kitchen we're gettin saucy and spicy with indian-inspired one-pot meal.

    >> alexandra garnecelli and the host of " alex 's day off" on the food network .

    >> how are you, darling?

    >> finally not the plain old, plain old chicken breast .

    >> and not italian. it's more indian.

    >> you're right. we start with an italian cacciatore idea.

    >> in olive oil ?

    >> i browned some chicken thighs and legs, my favorite part of the chicken.

    >> we're tired of breasts, chicken breasts.

    >> speak for yourself.

    >> the unsung hero of chicken.

    >> it's more moist.

    >> absolutely. cumin and chili flakes.

    >> the chicken broth .

    >> you get the that aromatherapy. some sliced onion. i like to use white onion .

    >> mild.

    >> sweet. i love that. garlic cloves cut in half and throw it in there. one-pot meal it's so easy. throw in the garlic clove , nice and big. minimal chopping, minimum grief. that wonderful supple garlic clove at the end and a nice knob of fresh ginger grated. the combination of the spices.

    >> that smells great.

    >> and the onions, right?

    >> wish i could smell. got a shnozz full. you know what i mean ?

    >> oh, god.

    >> this will clear your sinuses in no time. and aromatic cinnamon stick.

    >> what?

    >> for that little -- i know, it's getting crazy and fresh bay leaf and then just a can of peeled tomatoes.

    >> whole tomatoes?

    >> that's right.

    >> put some elbow grease into it, hoda.

    >> how long does this cook up?

    >> you simmer it?

    >> yeah, for ten minutes or so, and put the chicken right back in here.

    >> again, these were cooked and through and through or did you just brown them?

    >> i just browned them. they're still a little pink on the inside but percolate in this liquid.

    >> for how long, sweetie?

    >> ten minutes.

    >> that's awfully easy.

    >> the thing i love about this dish, it feels homey.

    >> it looks winter to me. it looks like on a winter -- like we're about to get more snow here.

    >> exactly.

    >> i'll take the pot home and call it dinner.

    >> the other thing is, when you're driving your car and you park it perfectly in a parking spot, parking these pieces of chicken in there.

    >> park them right where they fit, baby.

    >> it's so satisfying. let this bubble on the stove and you end up with this.

    >> oh, that's beautiful. that is gorgeous.

    >> it just bubbles on the stove.

    >> let's see how good it really is, shall we, alex ?

    >> please.

    >> you're not -- do you want this one?

    >> oh, no, you please, taste. i practiced for this dish so many times. with it, a little cab --

    >> can you hand me that big knife?

    >> i know. here you go.

    >> i like that. you see, that's someone who cooks, somebody who grabs a big knife.

    >> she doesn't cook. are you kidding me? that's hysterical.

    >> do not listen to her, alex .

    >> she makes one kind of fish. what do you make?

    >> tilapia.

    >> i feel like i'm sandwiched in the middle of this.

    >> i love the cinnamon thing.

    >> isn't that cool?

    >> really delicious.

    >> what kind of -- red with this?

    >> this is an argentinian, fruity, but not too sweet.

    >> alex , thank you so much.

    >>> up next, looks of the

TODAY recipes
updated 2/12/2010 2:43:03 PM ET 2010-02-12T19:43:03

Recipe: Braised chicken thighs with tomato

Ingredients
  • 6 tablespoons canola oil
  • 6 pieces each chicken thighs and legs, 12 total
  • 1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
  • 1 large white onion, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled and halved lengthwise
  • 1 large "knob" ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 teaspoons chili flakes
  • 4 bay leaves, fresh or dried
  • 1 28-ounce can whole, peeled tomatoes
  • Water, as needed
Preparation

Heat 1 large skillet over high heat. Add 4 tablespoons canola oil. Arrange the chicken on a tray in a single layer and season with salt. Turn the pieces on their other side and season again. When the oil begins to smoke lightly, carefully add the pieces to the oil. Do not overcrowd the pan. Resist the temptation to move or turn the pieces. Allow them to brown on their first side, 3-5 minutes. Use a metal tongs to turn the chicken pieces on their second side and brown them 3-5 minutes. Transfer the chicken pieces to a tray and set aside.

In the same skillet where you cooked the chicken, add the cumin seeds and the chile flakes and stir rapidly to give them a quick toast, 10-15 seconds. Stir in the ginger and garlic. Season with salt, add the tomatoes, cinnamon and bay leaves Allow the tomato to cook and all the flavors to come together, 10 minutes. Add the chicken back to the pan and keep the heat low and continue cooking until the pieces are cooked through, 30-45 minutes.

Note: If the sauce becomes overly thick or begins to stick to the bottom of the skillet, feel free to add water, about 1/2 cup at a time.

When the chicken is cooked through, remove and discard the cinnamon sticks. Taste for seasoning. Serve with braised cabbage.

Serving Size

Serves 8-10

Recipe: Naan

This is my favorite Indian bread. It can be used like a utensil, soaking up sauces and as a "cooling" element for hot foods. It is also pretty simple to make. It is traditionally made with Chapati flour, a whole-wheat flour with a fine, powder substance but bread flour works as well.

Ingredients
  • 2 cups Chapati (or bread flour plus a little extra for kneading and rolling
  • 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 3/4 cup whole-milk yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon warm water
  • Canola oil
Preparation

Place the Chapati flour into a large bowl and add the salt and the yeast. Use your fingers to mix and blend the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of the butter, yogurt and warm water. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the hook attachment (or, alternatively, with your hands) combine all of the ingredients. It should loosely come together. Knead the dough with the mixer on low speed until becomes smooth, 8-10 minutes. Alternatively, knead the dough on a lightly floured flat surface.

Pour the remaining melted butter into a bowl large enough to hold the dough. Spread it on the sides and bottom and place the dough in the center. Cover with a towel and keep in a warm place. Allow it to rise for 1-1 1/2 hours.

Gently roll the dough out into a 9-inch circle on a lightly floured surface, about ¼- to 1/2-inch thick and cut into quarters. Roll each quarter out to 1/8-inch thick and you know that 2 of them can fit on a baking sheet.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Use a paper towel soaked with a touch of canola oil to lightly grease 2 baking sheets. (Alternatively, place a baking stone in the center of the oven.) Put the baking sheets in the center of the oven. Note: Be careful to not leave the baking sheets in the oven for too long otherwise you'll risk the oil getting too hot and smoky.

Divide each half of the "rested" dough into 3 equal pieces. Lightly flour a rolling pin and roll each into a flat (albeit) imperfect oval. When all of the ovals are rolled, brush any excess flour from them and place them, in a single layer, on the baking sheet (or baking stone) in the oven. Bake them until they get light brown and puffy, about 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and place on a serving platter lined with kitchen towels to keep warm.

Serving Size

Serves 8-10

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