Basic Hot Chicken Curry

2013-07-29
  • Yield : 1.2kg
  • Servings : 3 to 4
  • Prep Time : 10m
  • Cook Time : 30m
  • Ready In : 50m

Ingredients

  • 500g chicken Maryland or thigh fillets
  • 500g potatoes diced in large bite sized chunks
  • 200g onions roughly chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 4 red chilies
  • 4 level dessertspoons curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon or less – chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1 or 2 cups water
  • 400ml can coconut cream/milk
  • 4 sprigs of curry leaves (extra as garnish)
  • 6 dessertspoons oil or Ghee

Method

In a food blender (as pictured) add the onion, chilies, garlic, ginger and about two dessertspoons of water to puree and blend the mixture to nearly a fine pulp. Add the oil or ghee to a medium/large heavy based pan and place on moderately high heat. When hot add the curry leaves and let them cook and release their aroma for about 30 seconds then add the onion mixture. Cook by stirring as often as you can on medium heat for at least 10 minutes or longer if time permits. In the meantime if using chicken Maryland then cut each into 4 to 5 pieces with bones intact to add further flavour to the curry, my 3 whole pieces of chicken Maryland weighed 500g in total. When the onion mixture has cooked add to it the curry powder, chili, salt and 1 cup of water. Stir to blend and bring to boil. Reduce the heat and cook further for 10 minutes stirring to avoid the curry from sticking to the base of the pan. In the meantime peel potatoes and cut them into large bite sized chunks. By now 10 minutes of cooking curry would be up so add the chicken pieces to the curry, stir well to combine bring to boil then cover the pan and simmer to cook for 20 more minutes.  Add the coconut milk last and it is ready when it come to boil and serve. The second cup of water can be added, either a little or all of it if the mixture during cooking starts to catch on the base of the saucepan due to dryness or simply if you require a more ‘liquidy’ curry sauce/gravy as an end result, in this case a little more salt may also be needed.

If using thighs then cut them into bite sized pieces and add to the curry mixture as above together with the potatoes. This should take approximately 10 minutes to cook or when potatoes are fully cooked, I find that piercing them with a fork is the best way to check if they are soft enough. Add the coconut lastly for not just flavour but also as curry sauce/gravy, once it comes to boil, serve. The second cup of water can be used as the description above but it may not be necessary because chicken thighs do not take long to cook as opposed to chicken with bones intact. Apply the method according to your preference.  Serve with rice, roti (see my recipe) or Western breads.

Variations and Suggestions

For both methods above you may omit potatoes and use 1kg of chicken instead. When in Malaysia asking for a chicken curry…… in not so up-market fine-dining  restaurants you are most likely to be served chicken curry hot/spicy, with a potato or two and in pieces with bones intact. This is often referred to as Hawker-style and a variation to this would be dependent on which cultural background the Malaysian community has cooked the meal for you. My version is a fusion version using what’s available readily locally or from my garden and with minimum fuss and time requirement to suit the West.

There are many blends of ‘curry powders’ available in Malaysia and in the West today. Do not be alarmed by comments on current major cooking shows that you will be eliminated from the competition if your curries weren’t blended and ground from the start! The taste of curry will depend on the taste of blends/brands used. You will also find that some blends would be spicier than others and some blends would be catered for just meat, fish or for vegetable curries so purchase them accordingly and when you are happy with the blend and the brand just stick to them.

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Recipe Comments

  1. posted by Sareen on September 2, 2013

    This recipe was really easy to follow, not to mention delicious too. I’ve always wanted to know how to make an authentic curry, but I never thought it could be this easy. This has become a weekly regular for me!

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