THE first meal we had after landing in Chennai earlier this year was homecooked appam with mutton stew. I loved the combination, and especially the stew because it was so tasty and aromatic. Our friend Becky said it’s an easy dish to prepare, and just recommended a Keralan cookbook for the recipe.
I made that meal but with chicken, the first weekend after I came back from the trip to cure my post-holiday blues.
I failed miserably at making appam – even with the non-stick pan I lugged home – but the chicken stew is easy to make.
It’s still the aroma of the spices, curry leaves and green chillies that I love most, and it’s always a reminder of a wonderful holiday with good friends who pampered and spoilt us.
Ivy Soon writes for the Don’t Call Me Chef column in Star2.
- 2-3tbsp cooking oil
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2-3 cloves
- 2-3 cardamons
- 1sprig curry leaves
- 2 big onions, cut into chunks
- 1tbsp young ginger, sliced
- 3-4 green chillies, slit sideways
- 1 chicken, cut into medium pieces
- 2-3 potatoes, quartered
- 2cups thin coconut milk
- 1cup thick coconut milk
- salt and ground pepperto taste
- Heat up the cooking oil and fry the spices and curry leaves till aromatic.
- Add the onions, ginger and green chillies.
- Stir for a few minutes till fragrant.
- Then add the chicken and potatoes. Fry to mix everything up for about five minutes over medium heat.
- Lower the heat and add the thin coconut milk.
- Let it simmer till the chicken is cooked and the potatoes have softened.
- Then add the thick coconut milk and season. Cook for another two or three minutes.
- Serve with appam or rice.