Country Captain


A British sea captain is said to have introduced this spicy Indian-style curry to Charleston, South Carolina, in the 1700s, but Southerners have made it their own.

Country Captain
Makes 4 to 6 servings
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 bone-in skin-on chicken thighs, trimmed (about 1½ pounds)
  • 4 chicken drumsticks
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • ½ cup chopped green bell pepper
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1¼ cups long-grain rice
  • 2 tablespoons firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons curry powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ⅛ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • ½ cup golden raisins
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can petite diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons chopped toasted almonds
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. In a 12-inch cast-iron skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium. Sprinkle chicken with 1½ teaspoons salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Add chicken to skillet; cook, turning occasionally, until browned, about 8 minutes. Remove from skillet.
  3. Add onion, bell pepper, and celery to skillet; cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add garlic; cook for 1 minute. Stir in rice, brown sugar, curry powder, ginger, paprika, and red pepper. Stir in broth, raisins, remaining ½ teaspoon salt, and remaining ½ teaspoon black pepper; nestle chicken into rice mixture. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
  4. Bake, covered, until rice is tender and a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion of chicken registers 165°, about 40 minutes. Remove chicken from skillet. Add tomatoes and vinegar; gently fluff rice mixture with a fork. Arrange chicken over rice mixture. Cover and let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with almonds and parsley.



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