Black Pepper Chicken

This month over at Food ‘n Flix we’re watching a movie called The Mistress of Spices hosted by Camilla. Tilo owns a spice shop and was trained in India, honing her natural skills of being able to read people. Tilo now lives in the Bay Area, selling spices to people – being able to pick out what they need for certain situations.

I wish there was a spice shop like Tilo’s around. I would love to learn what spices are best for my current life situation – reduce my stress, make me a good lawyer, accomplish my goals… I need Tilo in my life to inspire me to use the right spices!

For this dish I focused on black pepper. I feel like pepper is something so commonly used, but easily overlooked. I use black pepper in almost everything I cook – more than salt actually. I love the spice it can add to a dish and how it can help emphasize the other flavors of the dish.

According to wikipedia, pepper originates in South East Asia and has been used in Indian cooking essentially forever. In fact, the peppercorns used to be known as “black-gold” and were used as a form of money. Look how rich I am! This dish is like eating gold!

Black pepper is now commonly used in cuisines all around the world. It’s one of the most used spices in my kitchen, so I need to remember to not neglect it and to value it for what it is.

Black Pepper Chicken

1/2 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes
1 tbsp plain yogurt
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1-inch fresh ginger root, skinned and minced
1 tbsp ground black peppercorns, coarsely ground
1/2 tsp red chili powder
1/8 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp ground mustard
pinch of red chili flakes
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground cumin


1. Marinate the chicken in the yogurt, lemon juice, garlic, ginger, pepper, chili powder, turmeric, and salt. Let sit for 20 minutes in the refrigerator.

2. In a deep pan heat the vegetable oil, on high. Add the mustard and chili flakes. Fry for 15 seconds. Add the coriander and cumin, and stir for 35 seconds.

3. Add the marinated chicken to the pan, browning the chicken on each side. Lower the heat, cover with a lid, and cook for 15 minutes.

4. Serve over rice.

* serves 2
* Shared with Food ‘n Flix