Sara Dhanani

Archive for the ‘Meat & Poultry’ Category

Chicken Stew

In Favorite Recipes, Meat & Poultry, Whole 30/Paleo on January 8, 2017 at 1:53 pm

It’s the new year and time to build better eating habits. I am planning to switch to eating paleo most of time ( I’m a desi girl at heart and giving up all carbs is gonna be unnatural). I don’t think carbs are the devil, but over time I have realized that certain carbs don’t agree with me, so eventually would like to add back chickenpeas and bajra. 

For now though, I am going to do a whole 30 challenge. I love to recreate old recipes, making them healthier. Knowing that you are actually feeding your body, rather than the feeling of hunger. That’s powerful, to nourish all of you. 

Back to whole 30. I love certain aspects of this plan, the emphasis on cooking, using healthy ingrediants, getting rid of sugar and processed foods, and breaking the cycle of your weaknesses.

This sweet potato and chicken stew is insanely good. It’s hearty and the kind of food that warms up your soul. And it’s made in your insta pot. Yes!


1 chicken breast cut up in bite sized pieces

1/2 of a sweet potato cut up in bite sized cubes

16 ounces of tomato purée/ strained tomatoes

2 cups chicken broth 

2-3 cloves of garlic chopped up

1/4 of an onion chopped up tiny 

1 – 2 jalapeño peppers chopped up

1 tsp dried oregano 

1/2 tsp of chili powder 

1 tsp ground cumin

1 bay leaf

A punch of garam masala ( trust me)

Salt to taste 

A sprinkle of pepper

A handful of spinach 

1/2 a bellpepper cut up in thin strips.  

2-3 tablespoons of olive oil ( not extra virgin)


Heat one tablespoon of olive oil and sauté garlic and onion till its translucent. I do this on the sauté mode of the insta pot. Add chicken and cook till its opaque. Add your spices and sauté till fragrant. Add the bay leaf, tomatoes, sweet potato and chicken broth. Switch over to slow cook mode on the instapot and let this deliciousness cook for 2 hours. Now add the bell peppers and spinach and cook for another 2 hours. It smells divine! The warmth of the garam masala and cumin is so comforting in the winter. 

The best Chicken Karhai

In Curries, Favorite Recipes, Meat & Poultry, Week night meals on April 24, 2015 at 7:45 pm

I love making chicken Karhai! It’s fast and delicious making it a perfect week night meal. I usually serve it with naan. This is the second Karhai post on the blog and is by far the best Karhai I have made and is inspired by my sister in laws, sisters recipe! Thanks Noreen and Saira!!


1-1.5 pounds of bone in chicken

1 tablespoon of ginger julienned 

5-6 whole dried red chillies

1 tsp coriander seeds 

1 tsp whole cumin seeds

1/2 tsp garam masala powder

1 carton of crushed tomatoes

1 tablespoon kasuri methi

A small bunch of chopped freshcoriander 

1/4 cup of a high heat oil 


Heat oil in a large non stick pan. Add 1 tablespoon of julienned ginger in the hot oil, add chicken and cook on a high flame. Coarsely crush cumin and coriander seeds and add the the chicken. Also add the red chillies. Fry for a few minutes till the water from the chicken evaporates. Add the crushed tomatoes and continue frying on high heat the oil separates from the tomato. Add garam masala, kasuri methi and mix it together. You could add a teaspoon of red chili powder but I haven’t felt the need for it. Add fresh chopped coriander and serve with hot naan.. And per my husband a cold cold beer. 

Chicken Pulao

In Favorite Recipes, Meat & Poultry, Week night meals on March 28, 2015 at 6:17 pm

Pulao is the perfect weeknight meal, with fluffy rice laced with herbs, spices and your choice of protien. It’s also the perfect meal when you are under the weather and both my girls enjoy it with relish, requesting more Alu (potato). The rice is cooked in the chicken broth and since I always use bone in chicken, it is a wonderful meal for the kids.



Two pounds bone in, skinless chicken

Two cups of basmati rice 

Two potatoes peeled and quartered

One teaspoon whole coriander seeds

One teaspoon cumin seeds

2-4  green cardamom pods

One black cardamom pod

A cinnamon stick

A few whole peppercorns

2-4 whole dried red chilies

2-3 whole green chillies

One tablespoon ginger garlic paste

Half a onion chopped finely 

A little oil 


Heat oil in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Add ginger garlic paste, onion and sauté till onions are translucent. Add cumin seeds, coriander seeds, red and green chillies, cardamom, peppercorns and cinnamon and sauté till its aromatic. Add chicken and potatoes and cook for a few minutes till lightly fried. Add 4 cups of water and bring to a boil. Add 2 teaspoons salt and then the rice. Bring to a boil again, and then cover the saucepan with the lid. Simmer on low heat for 10-15 minutes till the broth has been absorbed and potatoes are cooked. 

Spoon it up into a bowl, and pjs and the couch is a must!

Panda Bear chicken

In Favorite Recipes, Meat & Poultry, Week night meals on June 25, 2014 at 7:41 pm

To please my four year old’s orange chicken obsession (from Panda Express nonetheless), I came up with a easy spinoff recipe. It is pre preschooler approved!


Chicken thighs
Panko bread crumbs
Oil to fry

For the sauce:
1 tablespoon of orange zest
2 table spoons orange juice
2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice cooking wine
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon oil
2-3 cloves of garlic chopped

Cut the chicken into 2-3 inch pieces. Coat with Panko and fry in oil till golden brown. Drain on a paper towel and keep aside.

Orange sauce: heat oil and sauté the garlic lightly. Add the chicken. Mix the rest of the sauce ingredients and pour over the chicken. Cook for a few minutes till the sauce coats the chicken.

Almost guilt free!


Party perfect Chicken Salad Sandwiches

In Appetizers, Favorite Recipes, Meat & Poultry on March 14, 2014 at 6:02 pm

My hunt for the perfect chicken sandwiches ended with this recipe. It has the perfect amount of mayo, crunch from the celery and almonds and sweet tartness from the grapes. Devoured!

<Chicken Salad Sandwiches
Chicken Salad Sandwiches

2 pounds roasted chicken, cooked and diced
3/4 cup mayo
1 tablespoons dijon mustard
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 cup grapes, halved
1/4 cup finely diced celery
1/4 cup roasted walnuts
1 cup spinach or arugula
7 grain bread


1. Mix together Mayo, mustard, lemon juice. In a large bowl, mix together chicken, salt, black and cayenne pepper, grapes, celery and walnuts. Stir until everything is coated.

2. To serve, lightly smear mayo on the bread. Place greens on bread and top off with a spoonful of chicken salad. Cut off the edges neatly for tea sandwiches.