Friday, January 30, 2015

Appam & Chicken Stew in Thalayad, Kerala

My parents in law live on a farm in a village called Thalayad in Kerala. My mother in law Alice Mathew is a renowned cook and makes a great meal of the every day appam and chicken curry.
Each home has their own style of cooking the famous appam and chicken curry / stew breakfast, especially a Syrian Christian home.

Here is how Alice Mathew makes her chicken curry.

Because the chicken is quite hard there, it is first pressure cooked with ground whole spices. Farm grown pepper, cinnamon, and store bought cloves are ground on stone and chucked in. Add some salt and turmeric. Add 3 green chillies slit down te middle and a handful of curry leaves.
2-3 whistles in the pressure cooker are enough.
Then fry onions, 3-4 sliced fine for a full chicken till brown, add at least a tablespoon of fresh ginger and another of garlic. Add a teaspoon of coriander powder and red chilli powder. Sprinkle some hot water to bring it together and add the chicken. Once the chicken is cooked, add the thin coconut milk ( the second & third press ). Continue to cook the chicken curry for 5-8 minutes, turn the ehat low and add the thick coconut milk. Garnish with fried small onions.
In Kerala, we use fresh coconut oil . So are the coconuts and many of the spices. That is  key to making this curry so delish !