Monday, May 24, 2010

Tumeric Chicken

Last night I made this tumeric chicken, and this morning when I woke up, the smell of tumeric is still in the kitchen. Crazy, huh? But like it or not, tumeric is good for the body! Do you know that tumeric, in addition to being used in curries, can be used as an antiseptic for cuts and burns, and also as an antibacterial agent ? It is used as a food additive to protect food products from sunlight as well as a colouring agent to colour cheese, yoghurts, mustards and salad dressings etc.

This dish which I adapted from Mrs Leong Yee Soo's cookbook could well be Indian or Peranakan (Straits Chinese) in origin, I am not too sure. There are a lot of ingredients involved and the steps are quite complicated, but you should give it a try cos the taste is very rich and quite different from the normal curry which is cooked using ready-made curry powder.

Recipe adapted from Mrs Leong Yee Soo.

INGREDIENTS (for 3-4 persons)
600g chicken, cut into small pieces
6 tbsp natural yoghurt
1 tsp salt, 1 tsp sugar, 0.5 tsp pepper 

120ml evaporated milk
120ml water
2 stalks coriander, with roots intact

Ingred A (Mix in a bowl)
1 tbsp coriander powder
2 tbsp cumin powder
1 tsp pepper powder
0.5 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tbsp tumeric powder
1 tbsp curry powder/curry paste

Ingred B (Ground to a paste)
2 small onions
2 cloves garlic
2 cm ginger

Ingred C (Seasonings)
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp sugar
0.5 tsp salt

1. Marinate chicken pieces for 45 min, with 6 tbsp yoghurt, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp sugar and 0.5 tsp pepper.

2. Mix evap milk with water, ingredients A (spices) and ingredients C (seasonings) in a large bowl. Add in the marinated chicken and mix well. Set aside.

3. Heat a heavy bottomed saucepan with 2-3 tbsp oil. Add in ingredients B and fry over medium heat until fragrant and oil oozes out. Add in chicken mixture from step (2), stir and bring to a boil. Then continue to cook over medium heat for 15 min. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. Reduce heat to low, add coriander leaves and stalk. Cover pan to simmer for 15-20 min or til chicken is tender and gravy is thick.

4. (Optional). If you prefer a thinner gravy, add another 120ml water. Stir and cook for 2 more min. Remove from heat.

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