Special Feature: Products Sally Recommends
Kerala Chicken Stew (Koshi Ishtu)
This is a recipe from the Syrian Christian community of Kerala.
2 lbs skinless boneless chicken thighs 1 kg
2 tbsp oil 25 mL
6 green cardamom pods, cracked open 6
6 whole cloves 6
1 stick cinnamon, about 2 inches (5 cm) long 1
1⁄4 tsp black peppercorns 1 mL
2 bay leaves 2
21⁄2 cups finely chopped onions 625 mL
2 tbsp minced green chiles, preferably serranos 25 mL
1 tbsp minced peeled gingerroot 15 mL
1 tsp fennel seeds (saunf), powdered 5 mL
1⁄4 tsp turmeric 1 mL
11⁄2 tsp salt 7 mL
6 small potatoes, halved (about 12 oz/375 g) 6
1 cup chopped green beans (2-inch/5 cm pieces) 250 mL
1 cup chopped carrot (2-inch/5 cm pieces) 250 mL
20 fresh curry leaves 20
2 tbsp julienned peeled gingerroot 25 mL
2 tbsp thinly sliced garlic 25 mL
1 can (14 oz/400 mL) coconut milk 1
1⁄2 cup frozen peas, thawed 125 mL
1. Rinse chicken and pat dry thoroughly. Set aside. In a saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, peppercorns and bay leaves. Sauté until fragrant, about 40 seconds.
2. Add onions and sauté until golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Add chiles, ginger, fennel and turmeric and sauté for 2 minutes.
3. Push masala to side of pan. Add chicken, folding each piece to double the thickness. Spoon masala over top and brown for 5 minutes. Flip chicken to brown other side, 3 minutes. Stir chicken to mix well with masala.
4. Add 1 cup (250 mL) water and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until chicken is partially cooked, about 15 minutes.
5. Add potatoes, green beans, carrot, curry leaves, ginger and garlic. Increase heat to medium and return to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
6. Add coconut milk and peas. Continue to simmer until vegetables are tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Serve hot over rice.
Substitute beef or lamb, if you prefer, for the chicken.
Recipes reprinted with permission from Complete Book of Indian Cooking, by Suneeta Vaswani, Robert Rose Inc., 2007.