Indian-Spiced Chicken & Asparagus

Indian-Spiced Chicken & Asparagus

This easy chicken-and-asparagus sauté is boldly seasoned with aromatic cumin and fennel; the seeds are toasted in a skillet before grinding to bring out the most flavor. If you don’t want to buy a whole jar of the spices, look for them in the bulk spice section in natural-foods stores and buy just what you need for this recipe. Serve over brown rice, millet or quinoa.

From EatingWell: March/April 2011
Yield: 4 servings, about 1 cup each
Active Time: 40
Total Time: 40


  1. 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  2. 1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  3. 1 pound chicken tenders, cut into bite-size chunks
  4. 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  5. 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  6. 1 medium onion, chopped
  7. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  8. 1 small fresh chile, seeded and minced
  9. 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  10. 1 1/2 bunches asparagus (about 1 1/2 pounds), woody ends trimmed, cut into 1-inch pieces
  11. 1/2 cup “lite” coconut milk (see Tip)
  12. 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro


  1. Toast cumin and fennel seeds in a small dry skillet over medium heat until fragrant and beginning to brown, about 2 minutes. Finely grind in a spice grinder (such as a clean coffee grinder) or with a mortar and pestle.
  2. Toss chicken with 1 1/2 teaspoons of the spice mixture and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a bowl. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook, stirring frequently, until browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove to a plate.
  3. Reduce heat to medium and add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, onion, garlic, chile and ginger; cook, stirring, until softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add asparagus, sprinkle with the remaining spice mixture and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in coconut milk and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and simmer for 2 minutes more. Return the chicken and any accumulated juice to the pan and cook until the chicken is just cooked through and the asparagus is tender-crisp, about 2 minutes more. Serve sprinkled with cilantro.

Tips & Notes

  • Refrigerate leftover coconut milk for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 2 months. It will appear separated when thawed; simply mix until smooth.


Nutrition Per Serving: 249 calories; 12 g fat (3 g sat, 6 g mono); 63 mg cholesterol; 9 g carbohydrates; 26 g protein; 3 g fiber; 514 mg sodium; 477 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Folate (34% daily value), Vitamin A (21% dv), Vitamin C (20% dv).

1/2 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 1 vegetable, 3 lean meat, 2 fat