Serves 8 servings
Cooking tips/notes: Groundnuts are peanuts – technically, a legume. In a dish like this stew, they take on a texture that’s similar to a bean. They also remind me of edamame. The overall flavor of the dish is definitely enhanced by marinating the chicken thighs overnight, or for at least several hours. My favorite brand of “natural” peanut butter to use in cooking is Smuckers; it really does seem to have the most intense peanut flavor. I highly recommend buying spices like cumin and coriander in bulk, storing them in the freezer, and then toasting and grinding them as needed.
3 pounds boneless/skinless chicken thighs
3 tablespoons minced fresh ginger, divided in half
6 cloves garlic, minced, divided in half
1 tablespoon ground cumin, divided in half
1 tablespoon ground coriander, divided in half
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, divided in half
4 tablespoons canola or grapeseed oil, divided in half
1 large yellow onion, diced
1 15.5-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 quart chicken stock
1 cup smooth, natural-style peanut butter
1 cup dry-roasted peanuts
2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
½ cup roughly chopped cilantro, for garnish, if desired
Kosher salt, for seasoning
Cut chicken thighs into 2-inch chunks and put in a large bowl. Rub all over with half of: minced ginger, minced garlic, ground cumin, ground coriander, and cayenne pepper. Season with 1 teaspoon of kosher salt. Cover bowl. Let marinate in refrigerator overnight.
The next day, heat half of canola or grapeseed oil over medium high heat in large, heavy pot. Brown chicken, a single layer at a time, in batches. Set each batch aside after browning.
Heat remaining half of canola or grapeseed oil in the same pot. Add onions and sauté until light golden brown, about 5 minutes. Then add remaining minced ginger, minced garlic, ground cumin, ground coriander, and cayenne pepper. Season with 1 teaspoon of kosher salt. Sauté for another few minutes, until very fragrant.
Add canned crushed tomatoes, chicken stock, peanut butter, and peanuts to the pot. Stir all to combine, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pot.
Add chicken back to pot. Simmer gently for 30 minutes.
Add sweet potato chunks. Continue to simmer gently until sweet potato chunks are tender, approximately 20 minutes.
Season with additional kosher salt, if desired.
Garnish with chopped cilantro right before serving.
Notes and Instructions
Recipe and photo: Traci Barr