Stephen jackson’s creates the classic mulligatawny soup – stephen jackson – huddersfield examiner

I am not a fan of this wet, warm winter we’ve been having so far. Chicken fingers in the oven Incessant rain, howling gales, and an overall temperature that’s made a mockery of my seasonal thermostat settings; dreadful.

There’s crocus shoots all over the garden, buds on the trees, and our local bird population doesn’t know whether to stock up on sunflower seeds or fly south. Best baked chicken fingers So hopefully, El Niño has done its worst, and we can get back to thick pullovers, log fires and slipping over on icy pavements.

It’s high time we had proper winter back in the north. Honey mustard chicken fingers Of course, part of my irritation at this unseasonably clammy weather comes because it’s not conducive to great winter cooking. What to serve with chicken fingers At this time of year we should be tucking into big steaming bowls of chili, or rich long-cooked curries. Deep fry chicken fingers We should be making hearty soups, crunchy-topped crumbles and big bursting pies.

It’s hard when the ambient temperature suggests whipping up a quick salad or maybe even wheeling out the barbecue. Best chicken fingers restaurant Well, maybe not, but you get my drift.

Cold-weather cooking is my favourite, as it seems to satisfy like no other – it’s proper soul food, nourishing, warming and satisfying us, heating the core and filling our kitchens with wonderful fragrances.

Which brings us to this week’s recipe, my take on a classic, Mulligatawny soup. How to make chicken fingers at home It’s a soup that has, regrettably, gone the way of a few contemporaries, and is now seldom seen, just like Brown Windsor, Mock Turtle and even Cock-A-Leekie to a certain extent.

I’m not sure if Heinz even make their tinned version of Mulligatawny any more. How to make fried chicken fingers I used to enjoy the occasional tin as a child – the subtle spices were perhaps my very first experience of ‘Indian’ flavours.

This version, however, is a full-on, flavour-packed, thick and hearty affair. Easy homemade chicken fingers The soup had its origins, quelle surprise, during the days of the British Raj, and began life as a sauce, served over poached poultry or meat, alongside mounds of rice.

It was essentially a thin concoction of onions, spices and broth made from the poached lamb or chicken. Oven baked chicken fingers recipe It takes its name from the original Tamil words for ‘pepper-water’, milagu thanni, which gives some indication of the consistency of these first versions.

Slowly the recipe evolved, adding more vegetables and lentils for bulk, the whole thing becoming thicker and more elaborate, and soon it became the dish itself; a spicy, chunky soup, thick and warming, just the ticket for wintry weather.

My version goes a step further, adding actual meat to the recipe, and generally bulking the thing out to make a properly big soup that can be a supper dish all by itself, especially with some soft pillows of grilled naan bread, some golden toasted cashews and a whirl of yoghurt.

Naturally, for those of a meat-free persuasion, this recipe can be instantly converted into a vegetarian soup by simply omitting the minced lamb, adding more lentils and switching out the chicken stock for a vegetable bouillon.

Now, fingers crossed for those plummeting temperatures, so we can enjoy this delicious, spicy soup in the correct manner – a proper winter warmer.

Add the onion, carrot, ginger, garlic, celery and chili, and sweat gently for about half an hour, stirring occasionally, until the onions have softened and become golden.

Add the apple. Cooking chicken fingers Sauté for another 3 minutes, then add all of the spices plus the curry leaves, and cook for a few minutes to release all the oils. How to fry chicken fingers Tip in the tinned tomatoes.

In a separate frying pan, cook the minced lamb (there should be sufficient fat in the meat to fry without any additional oil) until well-browned and completely cooked through.

To serve, heat the naan breads for 15-20 minutes in a medium oven, wrapped in foil with a splash of water, and brush each one on both sides with a little butter before serving.