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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Editor's Choice: Arvinda's Butter Chicken Masala

WWJD, What Would Jessa Do?

Jessa is a character on the HBO Series Girls. She’s spontaneous, lives in the moment and throws all caution into the wind. Sometimes, I have to remind myself that I should be more like her. One of the ways I could be more adventurous, is by trying ethnic foods.   

Until last week, I had never prepared or eaten Indian food. I was worried it would be too spicy or that I wouldn't like it for some other reason. Then, my co-worker received some samples of Arvinda’s spice blends in the mail. He encouraged me to try them, and in a “What would Jessa do?” moment, I agreed to make Butter Chicken using Arvinda’s Butter Chicken Masala.

Arvinda’s is a line of spice blends (also known as masalas) that are roasted and ground in Canada. They allow home cooks, like myself, to prepare healthy, delicious and home-style Indian meals easily. The blends can also be used as rubs and marinades for meats, poultry, fish, seafood, vegetables and tofu. All of Arvinda’s spice blends are gluten, preservative and oil free.

The recipe that I used to make Arvinda's Butter Chicken Masala can be found here and it only requires a low to moderate level of skill to prepare and cook. I invited a friend who likes Indian food over for dinner that night. I was anxious about how it would turn out, and paid very close attention to the directions. After removing the pan from the stove, we (me much more nervously) dug in and to our delight, loved it! The seasoning was moderately spicy (although I am sure that if I had marinated the chicken for more than a few hours it would be hotter), was slightly tangy and tasted fresh. Next time I make this dish, I will make naan to go with it. The sauce is good enough to eat without the chicken.

To summarize, Arvinda’s Butter Chicken Masala was a hit and I can’t wait to try Arvinda’s Tandoori Masala which smells a even stronger…after all, that is what Jessa would do.