Simple Indian dishes

I’ve been making with great success very simple coconut curry chicken. Having broken into Indian cooking I’m looking for some more recipes that are tried-and-true yet not particularly difficult for someone like me with no experience other than this one dish.

Any favorites to share?

Here’s what I’ve been making, for reference:

Not specifically, but I just wanted to say that for chicken in Indian dishes, thighs >>> breasts.

Try rista, which are lamb (my preference) or mutton meatballs in a red gravy. Traditionally, they’re prepared for weddings, but they make killer appetizers or even as a main dish served over rice. As always, there are different spices involved, but it’s not at all difficult to make.

Aloo Gobi. Super easy, super yummy.
And for dessert, Kheer!

While not strictly authentic you might want to try out a chicken tikka masala recipe as well. There are about a million different recipes out there but if you want my spin on it PM me.

Tarka Dal.

Lots of ingredients but don’t be put off as there are no difficult techniques.

Really great comfort food, and handy to have a vegetarian dish under your belt.

I love this recipe for saag paneer:

Although we usually substitute chicken (or goat!) for the paneer.

Thanks! I lean veg so I’ll love those.

You really can’t get much simpler than using some of the jarred sauces out there. Patak’s makes some wonderful sauces, and they have a recipe right on the label. I don’t even think you could mix your own spices and have it turn out so well as the jarred sauces.

I make buttered chicken, beef vindaloo, and curried lamb using jarred or wet-packaged spices and they’re wonderful.

Pretty much any chana dal recipe is easy and good (ignore those that say you need a pressure cooker–you don’t).

Overall great website for vegetarian Indian dishes, broken down by region (including a “Street Food” category.) I do have a lot of the individual spices, but I’ve found that as long as one doesn’t have a very discerning palate (I don’t) it’s not necessary to include every single spice - that’s what can make the recipe ingredient list look rather daunting.

I cook a lot of Indian; here’s a particular dal (lentil) dish I’ve made for so many years I don’t have an actual recipe for it.

Basically: Make a spicy dal stew, mung beans or red/yellow lentils (or a combination) work best. I always add a bay leaf or three during cooking. Add some finely-cubed carrots. Reduce the liquid so the stew is fairly thick. Right before serving, add a can or so of coconut milk and stir through. Optional: garnish with cilantro leaves before serving.

Dead easy, inexpensive and everyone I’ve served it to has loved it.

Peas pulao, either as a main course with raita on the side, or as a side dish to accompany a curry.

Ignore step 16 unless you’re cooking with a pressure cooker!

I tried the recipe linked to in the OP. Pretty good, though I could do with less sweetness. Also possibly less tomatoiness.

Previously, when I have tried indian recipes they specified yogurt as a sauce base. But plain yogurt tends to make the sauce sour. Is all plain yogurt sour?

Pretty much, although the degree of its sourness may vary. Yogurt is made by bacterial fermentation, the results of which includes lactic acid, responsible for the sourness. It seems to me that the sourness gets subtler with more cooking, but that may just be me. That said, most of the Indian recipes I cook don’t call for any yogurt, so you can certainly find plenty of recipes that don’t incorporate it at all, or you can cut the yogurt with cream or half-and-half if you want to reduce the sourness.

UK doper here with a long-time love of cooking and eating Indian food.
I wouldn’t worry about the sourness at all, particularly if you are using plenty of caramelised onions/nuts/coconuts/palm sugar. The sourness won’t be noticeable (a bigger contributor to sourness is often tinned tomatoes as their quality and sharpness can vary wildly. I recommend finding a brand that works well for you and sticking with it.)

As for the OP, One recommendation I’d have is to make the curry sauce base (any type) without the meat. Then add salmon, prawn or other sturdy fish (monkfish perhaps) for a gentle cooking for ten minutes on the residual heat Indian spices and fish are made for each other.