Serving
(click to enlarge)

Chicken with Tamarind
India (Andhra)

Serves:
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
2 main  
***
1-1/2 hrs  
Yes

A richly spiced and delicious curry from southeastern India. There's a lot of ingredients here but it isn't at all hard to make, and would still be worth it if it were. Serve with plenty of steamed Jasmine rice.




12
1
6
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1/2
2
1/4
1/2
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1/4
1
1/2
1/2
1/8
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8
5
1/2
1/2
4
1
1
----
1/2
1
2
1/4
1
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oz
T
oz
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in

t
t
---
in
cl
T
t
t
---
oz

T
T


t
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T
c
T
c
c
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Chicken meat (1)  
Tamarind (2)
Onion
-- Spice Mix
Cinnamon stick
Cloves
Fenugreek seed
Kalonji (Nigella)
-- Ginger Mix
Ginger
Garlic
Coriander seed
Sesame seed
Turmeric
-- Tomato Mix
Tomato
Peppercorns
Coconut grated
Chili powder (3)
Curry Leaves (4)
Bay Leaf
Salt
--------
Chickpea flour (5)
Water
Oil
Beer, amber (6)
Water
-- Garnish
Cilantro leaves
Mint leaves
Green chili
PREP   -   (40 min)
  1. Cut CHICKEN into bite size pieces.
  2. Prep TAMARIND as needed - see Note-2.
  3. Quarter ONION lengthwise, slice thin crosswise.
  4. Mix together all Spice Mix items, leaving whole.
  5. Slice GINGER very thin and chop fine. Crush GARLIC and chop fine. Grind CORIANDER and SESAME in a mortar. Mix together all Ginger Mix items.
  6. Scald TOMATOES 1 minute in boiling water, quench in cold water, peel and chop medium.
  7. Grind Peppercorns and mix together all Tomato Mix items.
  8. Dry roast CHICKPEA FLOUR until it is lightly browned. Mix with 1/3 cup Water.
  9. Cop your GARNISH ingredients to however you want them, any or all of those listed.
RUN   -   (45 min)
  1. In a spacious sauté pan, heat Oil. Stir in Spice mix and fry stirring for a few moments, just until aromatic, then stir in Onion. Fry stirring until light golden.
  2. Stir in Ginger mix and fry stirring until raw smell is gone - about 45 seconds.
  3. Stir in Chicken and fry stirring until all raw color is gone and its fairly dry, being very careful the garlic sticking to the bottom of the pan doesn't burn..
  4. Stir in Tomato mix, fry stirring until fairly dry and oil threatens to separate, then add Beer and again stir until fairly dry.
  5. Stir in Tamarind liquid and 1 cup Water. Simmer slowly until chicken is quite tender (30 min).
  6. Stir in Chickpea Flour mix and simmer a couple minutes more to thicken. Served Western style with rice it should be fairly loose.
  7. Garnish as desired. Serve hot with plenty of steamed Jasmine rice.
NOTES:
  1. Chicken:   For Indian curries always remove the skin and as much fat as possible. Weight given is for thigh or leg meat without skin, fat or bones. In India, more likely a whole chicken would be skinned and chopped into serving pieces. If you use bone-in joints bump the weight up to about 15 ounces (skin and fat removed) and cut them into serving pieces. A sharp Chinese cleaver knife driven by a soft faced mallet is perfect for this. Chicken, by the way, is very expensive in India and reserved for special occasions.
  2. Tamarind:   If your Tamarind is concentrate in a jar, use 1 T, or if it's block use about 1 T, soak and strain. If you don't have tamarind use 2 t lemon juice - not the same, but it's something. For detailssee our Tamarind page.
  3. Chili Powder:   The given amount in Indian Reshampatti powder makes this dish "wonderfully spicy" for those of us in the Southwest who have Paid Our Dues but may be devastating to many folks in the Frozen North. Kashmir will be found much milder. Cutting down the amount, of course, affects the flavor. For details see our Chili Page.
  4. Curry Leaves   These fresh leaves are necessary for the true flavor of southern India, and are now reasonably available in Indian markets, at least here in California. Dried ones aren't of much use. If you don't have them you will have to leave them out - there is no acceptable substitute. Use caution with how many because some people don't like the resinous taste. For details see our Curry Leaves page.
  5. Chickpea Flour:   [Besam, Gram Flour]   If you don't have this use regular whole wheat flour. Either way dry roast only until slightly darkened. The roasting is the same in theory as frying flour in butter for European roux - it's to remove the undesirable raw flavor.
  6. Beer:   It's actually supposed to be Palm Toddy, but that's real hard to find even in Los Angeles. The Asia Supermarket on Valley Blvd. in Alhambra has non-alcoholic palm toddy, but that's too sweet.
  7. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
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