This 22-minute South Indian-inspired chicken dinner is based on takeout versions served at Manhattan’s Curry Row. Using store-bought curry powder is an ingredient reducing shortcut that makes the already quick-cooking dish even faster. The tarka-like mustard-flecked cashew topping adds a final dose of flavor and crunch.


  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs (about 4 breasts or 7 thighs), cut into 1″ cubes
  • 2½ teaspoons mild curry powder
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons virgin coconut or vegetable oil (plus 2 teaspoons; optional)
  • ½ medium onion, chopped
  • 1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk (preferably full-fat)
  • 1 (2½”) piece ginger, peeled
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • ¼ cup raw cashews, chopped (optional)
  • 1½ teaspoons yellow and/or black mustard seeds (optional)
  • 5 ounces baby spinach
  • Cilantro leaves with tender stems and cooked rice or naan (Indian flatbread; for serving)


  1. Toss chicken with curry powder, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl.
  2. Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet (at least 12″ in diameter) over medium-high. Add onion and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes.
  3. Purée coconut milk, ginger, and garlic in a blender until very smooth.
  4. Add chicken and coconut milk mixture to skillet and cook, tossing occasionally, until chicken is cooked through and sauce has thickened, 7-10 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, if using, heat 2 tsp. oil in a small skillet over medium. Add cashews and mustard seeds and cook, stirring, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2–3 minutes. Immediately transfer mixture including the oil to a small bowl.
  6. Fold spinach into chicken mixture and cook until wilted, about 1 minute. Divide among 4 bowls. Top with cilantro and cashew mixture, if using. Serve with rice or naan alongside.
  7. Editor’s note: This article has been updated as a part of our archive repair project.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here