44 degrees, so much rain
Turpentine, Brandi Carlile
I miss Indian food. I especially miss it in the fall, when the turmeric-colored leaves on the trees immediately make me crave warm spices, like garam masala and cardamom. The Kenai Peninsula is desperately lacking in the area of Indian cuisine, and while I’m admittedly no expert, I do my best to attempt to make it at home. Curries are my usual go-to, like the chickpea and mango curry with homemade flatbread in my cookbook. But other dishes, like tandoori chicken, have always evaded me, since I don’t have a tandoor oven – a clay or metal oven heated over a charcoal or wood fire used to cook at high heat.
Tandoori chicken is marinated for several hours in yogurt that is heavily seasoned with toasted spices, fresh ginger, garlic, salt, and citrus, tenderizing the meat and mingling the flavors. The yogurt also helps the marinade to adhere securely to the chicken during roasting, creating a flavorful, crispy exterior and juicy interior. When I came across a method for baked tandoori chicken drumsticks using a standard oven, I had to give it a try. Although not traditional, it turned out beautifully. I served it with barley couscous, fresh cilantro and mint, and a quick peanut sauce, but you could also serve it with a nice mango chutney, if you prefer.