My Kitchen Antics: Naadan chicken chilli roast

Chicken (with bone)- 650gms
Coconut oil- 2 tbsp
Curry leaves- 3 to 4 sprigs
Small onions (shallots)- 3/4th to 1 cup, crushed (refer notes)
Red chilli flakes- 3 tbsp (refer notes)
Soy sauce- 1/2 tbsp (optional)
Salt- to taste

Heat coconut oil in a frying pan and throw in the curry leaves.

Fry till slightly crisp and then add the crushed small onions.

Saute for about 4 to 5 minutes and then add the red chilli flakes.

Cook on low to medium heat until the mix turns a dark brown in colour. 

Make sure you don’t burn the flakes, and keep mixing in between. This step is important as it determines the final colour of the dish.

The mix should be a dry one, as opposed to a wet masala.

Tip in the chicken, add enough salt, mix well with the masala, close and cook for about 10 minutes.

By now water would have released from the chicken, stir well, cover and cook till the chicken is almost done.

Then open lid and on high heat, saute the chicken till all the water has evaporated and the masala sort of clings on to the meat.

Reduce heat a bit and add the soy sauce. Roast the chicken till all the masala coats the chicken and the colour turns a dark brown. This can take a while, about 10 to 15 minutes. Don’t skip this step though.

Add a few torn curry leaves, give a final mix and transfer to serving plate.

Notes: I’ve used chicken wings here, but you can use any part really. If using a whole chicken, make sure you cut them into small pieces. I’ve also tried this with boneless chicken thighs and it works great when you want to serve as an appetiser with drinks.

Using small onions (cheria ulli/shallots) make all the difference. Using a pestle and mortar gently crush them. If you don’t have one, then roughly slice each small onion into two or so.

That said, I’ve made this using normal onions and it tastes fine as well. I’ve sliced them to the size of a small onion and used that. Haven’t bothered crushing them.

Use dried Kashmiri chilli flakes for this, as you need about 3 tbsp and you don’t want it to be unbearably spicy. I get ready made chilli flakes here and I’ve used that, but you can just dry roast whole Kashmiri chilli till crisp and roughly grind it to get flakes.

Soy sauce is my personal addition and i love the flavour, but it tastes perfectly fine without the soy as well.

I sometimes add a handful of coriander leaves at the end instead of the curry leaves.

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