This big-batch recipe is an unusual but brilliant choice for freezing. Moist chicken thighs hold up well, especially in the spicy tomato sauce. To make dinnertime even easier, use heat-and-eat pouches of precooked unseasoned basmati rice. Serve with lime wedges.
Serves 12 (serving size: 1/2 cup rice and about 1 cup chicken mixture)
1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chicken with 1 teaspoon salt, cumin, and cinnamon. Add half of chicken to pan; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring once. Remove chicken from pan. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken; remove from pan.
2. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil, onion, garlic, ginger, and serrano to pan; sauté 1 minute. Reduce heat to low; cook 5 minutes or until softened, stirring frequently. Add garam masala and red pepper; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add remaining 1 teaspoon salt, stock, half-and-half, and tomatoes, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low; stir in chicken. Simmer 6 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove from heat; stir in butter until butter melts. Serve over rice, or follow freezing instructions. Sprinkle with cilantro.
TO FREEZE: Cool chicken mixture and rice to room temperature; seal in separate large zip-top plastic freezer bags. Lay bags flat in freezer; freeze up to 2 months.
TO THAW: Microwave chicken mixture in bag at MEDIUM (50% power) for 4 minutes or until pliable. No need to thaw rice.
TO REHEAT: Place sealed bag of chicken mixture in a large pot of boiling water; cook 10 minutes or until heated. Pour rice into a microwave-safe bowl; microwave at HIGH 3 minutes.