This tangy, spicy curry from Goa, India, has roots in vinh d’alho, a stew brought to the region by Portuguese colonists. Now an Indian restaurant staple, it comes in countless variations—some fiery, some mild—from the subcontinent to the British Isles.
1 tbsp. whole black peppercorns
1 tbsp. black mustard seeds
2 tsp. cumin seeds
2 tsp. coriander seeds
1 tsp. fenugreek seeds
5 whole cloves
1 (1″) stick cinnamon
1⁄4 cup Hungarian paprika
1⁄4 cup palm vinegar
1 tsp. ground turmeric
1 tsp. light brown sugar
16 cloves garlic, minced
1 (2″) piece ginger, peeled and minced
2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut in half
3 tbsp. canola oil
2 large yellow onions, finely chopped
10 thin green Indian chiles, stemmed, seeded, and minced
1 lb. small new potatoes, cut in half (cut in quarters if large)
Cooked white rice, for serving
Heat peppercorns, mustard, cumin, coriander, and fenugreek seeds, cloves, and cinnamon in a 12″ skillet over medium-high heat, and cook, swirling pan occasionally, until lightly toasted, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, and let cool; working in batches, transfer spices to a spice grinder and process until finely ground. Transfer to a small food processor along with paprika, vinegar, turmeric, sugar, 1⁄4 of the garlic, and half the ginger; puree until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl, and add chicken; rub chicken with spice mixture. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or up to overnight.
Heat oil in a 6-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onions, and cook, stirring, until caramelized, about 25 minutes. Add remaining garlic and ginger along with chiles, and cook, stirring, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add chicken along with any paste in bowl, potatoes, and 2 cups water, and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low, and cook, covered and stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat, and season with salt; serve with rice.