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Pepper Chicken / Kozhi Milagu varuval

Black pepper is one of my favourite ingredient, especially when used in Non veg preparations. I am posting Pepper chicken recipe with a touch of Kerala tadka. The taste totally rely on the fresh ingredients we use to prepare. So I have used fresh ingredients wherever I can. This is definitely a treat to your taste bud. We love to have pepper chicken along with rasam and rice. However it can be also served with Indian bread. Nothing is as heavenly as an ice cream after this peppery meal.

Servings:  2        
Preparation Time: 20 mins
Cooking time: 1 hr
Level: Moderate
Ingredients:
1)      Chicken with bone                         300 gm
2)      Onion                                                  200 gm (One Big)
3)      Tomato                                               150 gm  (Two Small)                          
4)      Ginger                                                 15 gm
5)      Garlic                                                   4 cloves
6)      Green chilli                                        2 nos
7)      Curry leaves                                      10 nos
8)      Cumin seeds                                     1 Tsp
9)      Clove                                                   4 nos
10)   Green Cardamom                          2 nos
11)   Bay leaves                                         2 nos
12)   Cinnamom                                         1 stick 5cm length
13)   Turmeric powder                            ¼ Tsp
14)   Vegetable Oil                                   1 Tbsp
15)   Coriander leaves                             For garnishing
16)   Water                                                  1 Cup
For Marinade
17)   Lemon juice                                      2 Tbsp
18)   Coriander powder                          1 Tbsp
19)   Red chilli powder                            ½ Tsp
20)   Turmeric powder                            ¼ Tsp
21)   Cumin powder                                 1 Tsp
22)   Ginger garlic paste                        
23)   Crushed black pepper                  1 Tbsp
24)   Salt                                                       as required
25)   Vegetable oil                                    1 Tbsp
For Dry Roast
26)   Coriander seeds                              1 Tbsp
27)   Black peppercorns                         1 ½  Tbsp
Method:
Preparation:
1)      Dry roast the black pepper corns and coriander seeds separately
2)      Grind the coriander seeds to fine powder and crush the peppercorns to coarse.
3)      Make a paste of ginger, garlic and one green chilli.
4)      Clean the chicken and pat dry using towel. Marinate chicken with lemon juice, ginger garlic paste,
 powdered coriander seeds, turmeric powder, Red chilli powder, Cumin powder,  Salt, Oil and
 half of the crushed  black peppercorns. Marinate for atleast 15 mins.
5)      Slice the onion thinly. Slit remaining one green chilli. Chop the tomatoes and grind them
using blender.
Cooking:
1)      Heat 1 Tbsp Oil in a pan.
2)      Add cumin and allow it to splutter.
3)      When it splutters add cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and bay leaves. Sauté for 30 sec.
4)      Now add half of the thinly sliced onions. Stir fry till it becomes translucent adding little salt.
5)      Add turmeric into the onion and mix well
6)      Add the marinated chicken and combine well. Stir till chicken turns white.
7)      Now add the tomato paste and 1 cup of water. Mix everything well.
8)      Reduce the flame to low and cook the chicken for 30 -45 mins or till gravy thickens. Stir inbetween
to avoid  gravy sticking to the pan. Check for salt and if needed add it.
9)      When the gravy is thickened add the remaining crushed peppercorns. Stir to mix well.
10)   Turn off the heat.
For Tadka
11)   Take another pan and heat oil.
12)   Add curry leaves, remaining sliced onions and green chilli. Fry till onion become golden brown and
little crunchy.
13)   Transfer this mixture to the chicken and combine well.
14)   Garnish with coriander leaves and onion. Serve with rice or rotis.
Note:
1)      While marinating, instead of lemon juice you can add vinegar or yogurt.
2)      Tadka step is optional. The taste of fried onion and curry leaves adds special taste to the gravy.
If you want to skip tadka then add the onion, curry leaves and green chilli after adding the whole
 spices (Step 3)
   

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Kerala Chicken Curry with Cheratta Puttu / Nadan Kozhi Kuttan with Cheratta puttu

I have come up with one of the highly popular and most desirous recipe from Kerala”Puttu” (Malayalam). Usually served for breakfast along with “Chickpea curry”. “Puttu” is a dish made by steaming rice flour using cylindrical vessel and so the shape of puttu is cylindrical. It is called “Kuzha Puttu”(Kuzhal = Small Cylindrical pipe). Another way of steaming puttu is by using half coconut shell which is called “Cheratta puttu” (Cheratta = coconut shell). Nowadays  some variation of puttu uses wheat, rava, whole grains etc.. Also you can find readymade flour for making puttu. On the other hand, the accompaniments also varies widely. Most common is chickpea curry, banana and palm sugar. Also goes well with any other curries and non veg curries.

Since puttu is steamed, it is considered very healthy food. To add more healthiness and naturalistic to the dish, I have tried red rice flour and steamed using coconut shell. Instead of Kadala curry, I made Kerala Chicken curry (Nadan Kozhi Kuttan) to go with puttu.

Cheratta puttu



Servings:  2        
Preparation Time: 5 mins
Cooking time: 15 mins
Level: Easy
Ingredients:
1)      Red rice flour                                    200 gm
2)      Salt                                                    as required
3)      Grated coconut                                 4 Tbsp
4)      Warm water                                      1 cup
5)      Halved coconut shell                        2 nos
Method:
Preparation:
1)      Dry roast the rice flour using pan.
2)      Let it cool for 2 mins.
3)      Add salt to the warm water and mix well.
4)      Now add the warm water little by little to the rice flour mixing them well.
5)      Stop adding water when the consistency of the flour becomes somewhat moisture.
When you hold the mixture tight in your palm, it should form a ball.
6)      Rice flour should have moisture in it but not lumps.
7)      Clean the halved coconut shells using water.
Cooking:
8)      Sprinkle 1 Tbsp of grated coconut in each coconut shell.
9)      Divide the rice flour into two. Add each portion to each coconut shell.
10)   Sprinkle another 1 Tbsp of grated coconut at the end of the filling.
11)   Boil water in electric rice cooker (or) in a large pan (or) in idli cooker (or) any other steamer.
12)   Place the steamer partition on the electric rice cooker. If you are using idli cooker, place the
bottommost idli plate or if you are using any other steamer prepare the steamer for placing the shells.
13)    Place a wet cloth on the steamer and invert the coconut shell onto it, the mouth of the
 shell facing boiling water.
14)   Steam for 10- 15 mins.
15)   Turn off the heat and slowly take off the coconut shell from steamer along with the cloth to
avoid any fall off of rice flour.
16)   Place it on a plate and gently remove the coconut shell alone from the steamed rice flour.
17)   Serve hot with chicken curry.
Note:
1)      Use white rice flour, wheat flour, rava or any other whole grains in the place of red rice flour.
          Just make sure it should be coarsely powdered.  
 2)    Adjust the steaming time according to your steamer. Normal steaming time is 10 min in medium flame.


Kerala Chicken curry / Nadan Kozhi curry 

Servings:  2        
Preparation Time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 20 mins
Level: Moderate
Ingredients:
1)      Chicken                                               300 gm 
2)      Onion                                                  200 gm (1 medium)
3)      Tomato                                               150 gm (1 medium)
4)      Green chilli                                         2 nos
5)      Curry leaves                                       10 nos
6)      Turmeric powder                                ¼ Tsp
7)      Salt                                                     as required
8)      Coriander leaves                                2-3 stems
9)      Vegetable oil                                      1 Tbsp
For roasting & grinding:
1)      Coriander seeds                                 1 Tbsp
2)      Cumin seeds                                       1 Tsp
3)      Dried Red chilli                                   2 nos
4)      Black pepper                                       1 Tsp
5)      Cinnamon                                            1 nos – 5 cm length
6)      Cloves                                                  3 nos
7)      Fennel seeds                                       1 Tsp
8)      Green cardamom                                 2 nos
9)      Poppy seeds                                         ½ Tsp
10)   Garlic                                                    5 cloves
11)   Ginger                                                  15 gm
12)   Pearl onion                                           5 nos
13)   Grated coconut                                    ½ cup
14)   Vegetable oil                                       1 Tsp
Method:
Preparation:
1)      Clean the chicken and drain all the excess water. Marinate with little salt, turmeric powder
and chilli powder.
2)      Chop the onion, green chiliies and tomatoes.
3)      Heat 1 tsp oil in a small pan.
4)      Add all the ingredients given under roasting and grinding except ginger and coconut.
5)      Roast till the spices leave aroma and the seeds are lightly brown.
6)      Keep aside till it cools and transfer to mixer jar for grinding. Now roast the grated coconut
in the same pan till it become golden brown color. Set aside.
7)      Grind the coriander mixture adding the ginger and water little by little to a fine paste.
8)      Add the coconut to it and grind to combine well.
Cooking:
1)      Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan.
2)      Add curry leaves followed by onion and fry till translucent adding little salt and turmeric powder.
3)      Add the green chillies and tomatoes to the onion. Stir fry for 4-5 mins.
4)      Now add the marinated chicken. Toss till the chicken turns to white color.
5)      Add the ground paste and 1 cup of water. Mix well.
6)      Bring the heat to low. Close the lid and cook for about 15 mins.
7)      Check chicken pieces for doneness.  If needed add more water and allow boiling.
The curry should be watery in consistent.
8)      When done, garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot.

Note:
    
1)      Instead of grated coconut, you can also use coconut milk. In that case use 1 cup of milk.
2)      Use chicken.with bones.
3)      If you don’t have whole coriander seeds, use coriander powder.

Rogan Josh

Rogan Josh with a twist!!!

Rogan Josh is from Kashmir, meaning  cooked in oil at high heat. Tradionally Rogan josh is a Lamb dish cooked with Kashmiri chillies which gives the red color to the curry. But I made a twist by swapping Chicken for Mutton. I have also cooked Rogan josh with Mutton. But I couldn’t find any big difference in the taste of the curry except the meat. The gravy is enriched with all kind of spices and curd is added to lessen the intense taste of red chillies. I make most of the non veg dishes in my pressure cooker to get a well blended gravy. You could also use skillet, but cooking time varies little longer than the pressure cooker. This recipe is adapted from Hawkin’s recipe book.

Servings: 2
Cooker time: 10 mins
Preparation time : 20 mins
Level: Moderate

Ingredients:

Mutton / Chicken 500 gm
Vegetable Oil  1/4 cup
Bay leaves  2
Cinnamon  2 ½ cm stick
Green cardamoms  2
Onions  200 gm
Tomatoes  150 gm
Turmeric powder  1 Tsp
Red chilli powder  1 Tbsp
Curd beaten ¾ cup
Salt  as required

Roast and Grind:

Coriander seeds  1 Tbsp
Cumin seeds  2 Tsp
Poppy seeds  1/2 Tbsp
Almonds  10
Brown cardamoms peeled 1
Peppercorns  ¼ Tsp
Cloves  2
Mace  a pinch
Whole dry red kashmiri chillies  3
Ginger  15 gm
Garlic  5 flakes
Nutmeg grated A pinch

Method:

1. In a pan, roast together coriander seeds, cumin seeds, poppy seeds, shelled almonds, brown cardamoms, peppercorns, cloves, mace and grind to a paste along with whole chillies, ginger, garlic and nutmeg adding little water.
2. Heat oil in cooker. Add bay leaves, cinnamon and green cardamoms. Stir for a few seconds.
3. Add onions and fry till golden brown.
4. Add ground paste, tomatoes, turmeric and chilli powders. Stir.
5. Add 1/3rd of the curd and stir fry till curd is well blended. Do the same for remaining curd .Stir fry till oil shows separately.
6. Add meat and salt. Stir fry for 5-10 minutes.
7. Add 1/4 cup of water and mix well
8. Close cooker. Bring to full pressure on high heat. After the first whistle reduce heat and cook for 10 minutes.
9. Remove cooker from heat. Allow to cool naturally.
10. Open cooker, transfer to serving bowl and garnish with cilantro.

  

Note:
1. Goes well with nan, chapathi or pulao
2. If you are using chicken reduce the frying time from 10 to 5 mins ( see no.6 in method)

3. You can also substitute cashewnut instead of almond.