Of Flavours & Tastes…
This is perhaps the oldest chicken preparations I have come across in my family.A synonyms of the real soulful preparations from central Kerala villages.Today we can’t imagine a curry without tomatoes and whole spices like cinnamon and cloves.But this chicken curry doesn’t demand any such from you.I remember most of the earlier preparations in our village confined to what we could access from our own yards.A fry made with the bunch of spinach or a theeyal evolved from brinjals in kitchen garden.Since tomatoes remained the store-brought extravaganza,the ultimate they could aspire was few shallots and coconut.Yet the absence of ready-use powders and spices could do the magic.It’s been a moment of heavy emotion for me ,bringing back the bygones.
1 kg chicken,cut into curry pieces
2 green chillies,slitted lengthwise
2″ ginger, crushed
12 garlic cloves, crushed
2-3 sprig curry leaves
Coconut oil,salt as required
To roast and grind
1 cup fresh,grated coconut
4 tbsp coriander seeds / kothamalli
4 dried red chillies / vattalmulaku
2 tsp fennel seeds / perumjeerakam
Prepare the masala powder first.Roast the ingredients mentioned in the particular section till coconut turn brown and brings a delightful aroma.Grind this well without water and keep ready.Heat coconut oil in a curry pot and roast ginger,garlic,green chillies and curry leaves in law flame.You have to be patient till the raw smell disappear.Add the chicken to this and cook adding salt.This can be done with a closed lid in medium flame for the first five minutes.Reduce the heat to minimum after that and cook chicken till tender.Once chicken is cooked and still water remaining (chicken will bring enough water to cook the meat), you may add the prepared masala along with little water.The gravy can be medium thick.Cook again in law flame for 5-8 minutes.Check salt and switch off.An aromatic chicken curry is ready to be served with hot rice !