I was the Marian Finucane show at the weekend and talked about some recipes for quick tasty back to school meals. And on the blog today I am going to share a gorgeous Chicken Korma and a really tasty meatball dish. Perfect for the evening time and something quick and easy to get us all back into the swing of the school term.

KORMA HEAVEN... Try this delicious Chicken Korma as quick back to school recipe

KORMA HEAVEN… Try this delicious Chicken Korma as quick back to school recipe

Creamy Chicken Korma

The spicing in this korma is absolutely authentic, so it won’t resemble the formula restaurant version. Apparently it is traditionally the emperor’s favourite and it’s now one of mine too. In India it would be garnished with fresh rose petals, but for me it needs nothing more than a scattering of fresh coriander leaves.

Serves 4

2 tbsp rapeseed oil

2 onions, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 green chilli, seeded and finely chopped (optional)

2 tsp finely grated root ginger

1 tsp garam masala

1 tsp ground turmeric

¼ tsp chilli powder

400g (14oz) can chopped tomatoes

2 tbsp mango chutney, plus extra to serve

1 tsp tomato purée

400g (14oz) can coconut milk

4 x 175g (6oz) boneless, skinless

chicken breasts, cut into 2.5cm (1in) cubes

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper steamed basmati rice, to serve handful of fresh coriander leaves, to garnish warmed naan bread or green chilli and coriander flatbreads

Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium-high heat and fry the onions and garlic for 6–8 minutes, until golden brown. Stir in the green chilli, if using, and the ginger and cook for 1 minute, stirring.

Add the garam masala to the pan with the turmeric, chilli powder and a pinch of salt and cook for another minute, stirring. Add the tomatoes, chutney, tomato purée and 4 tablespoons of water. Stir well to combine, then bring to a fast simmer for 5 minutes, until the sauce is so well reduced that it is almost sticking to the bottom of the pan, stirring occasionally.

Stir the coconut milk into the pan and then stir in the chicken.

Slowly bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 10–15 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and completely tender. Season to taste.

To serve, arrange the basmati rice and chicken korma on warmed plates and scatter over the coriander leaves to garnish. Place the naan or green chilli and coriander flatbreads in a separate dish to pass around at the table along with the mango chutney.


Pork Meatballs with Coriander and Coconut

This is a fantastic recipe that my good friends at Bord Bia regularly demonstrate. It always goes down a treat with the crowd, so I thought it would be a great one to share with you. I’ve just slightly reduced the size of the meatballs so that they cook a little quicker in the oven.

Serves 4

450g (1lb) lean minced pork

1 onion, very finely chopped

1 egg, lightly beaten

50g (2oz) fresh white breadcrumbs

1 red chilli, seeded and finely chopped

1 tsp garam masala

5cm (2in) piece root ginger, peeled and finely chopped

4 tbsp chopped fresh coriander

1 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp mild curry paste

200g (7oz) canned or fresh tomatoes, chopped

250ml (9fl oz) carton coconut cream

1 tbsp lemon juice

steamed fragrant Thai jasmine rice, to serve

25g (1oz) toasted flaked almonds

lemon wedges, to garnish

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F/gas mark 7).Place the minced pork in a bowl with the onion, egg, breadcrumbs, chilli, garam masala, half of the ginger and 2 tablespoons of the coriander. Season to taste and mix well to combine, then shape into 12 small balls approximately 2.5cm (1in) in diameter. Put the meatballs in a large roasting tin, drizzle over the olive oil and toss gently. Place in the oven for 10 minutes, until lightly golden.

While the meatballs are cooking, make the sauce. Heat a frying pan over a medium heat and add the curry paste and the remaining ginger. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly, then add the tomatoes and continue to cook for 2–3 minutes. Add the coconut cream and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for

5 minutes.

Pour the sauce over the meatballs and quickly mix well to combine. Return to the oven for another 10 minutes, until the meatballs are cooked through and the sauce has reduced and thickened slightly.

Just before serving, stir in the lemon juice and arrange on plates with the rice. Scatter over the rest of the coriander and the almonds. Garnish with the lemon wedges to serve.

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