Bowl of Chicken Opo Gourd Curry
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Chicken with Opo Gourd
Burma
  -   Kyethar Buthee
Serves
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
5 w/rice  
***
1.5 hrs  
Yes
This Burmese country curry is wonderful, and my favorite Opo recipe. Burmese curries are quite different from both Indian and Thai curries. This one produces a fair amount of liquid, which I definitely like when serving with steamed rice. In Burma this recipe is sometimes made with more liquid and served as a soup. See also Comments.



1
1
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1/2
1/2
2
1/2
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8
4
3/8
5
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3
2-1/2
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#
#
---
t
t
T
T
---
oz
cl
in

---
T
c
---
Opo Gourd (1)
Chicken meat (2
-- Marinade
Turmeric
Paprika
Fish Sauce (3)
Salt
-- Purée
Onion
Garlic
Ginger Root
Chili, fresh (6)
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Oil
Water
-- Serve with
Jasmine rice,
Prep   -   (35 min)
  1. Cut CHICKEN into medium bite size pieces.
  2. Mix all Marinade items and massage into Chicken. Set aside for at least 20 minutes, turning once or twice.
  3. Peel OPO GOURD and slice 3/4 inch thick. Cut slices into sticks about 3/4 inch wide and 1 to 1-1/2 inches long. Hold in cold water until needed.
  4. Chop ONION medium, Peel GARLIC. Slice GINGER thin crosswise. Cap Chilis and deseed if desired (see Note-4), then cut coarsely crosswise. Mix all Purée items and run in a processor or blender (or pound in a mortar) until very fine. I use my Mini-Prep in two batches.
Run   -   (55 min)
  1. In a spacious sauté pan, heat Oil over high flame. Stir in Purée and fry stirring over declining heat almost until oil starts to separate, but no browning.
  2. Stir in Chicken along with Marinade. Fry stirring over fairly high flame until chicken has completely lost its raw color.
  3. Stir in Opo Gourd and fry stirring for 3 minutes.
  4. Stir in 2-1/2 cups Water. Bring to a boil, cover and turn to a simmer until Chicken is cooked tender, about 30 minutes.
  5. Serve with plenty of steamed Jasmine rice.
NOTES:
  1. Opo Gourd:   [Bottle Gourd]   This gourd is now a popular vegetable in North America and easy to find, even in many supermarkets. For details see our Bottle Gourd - Opo / Upo page.
  2. Chicken Meat   Weight is for skinless, boneless. I recommend thigh and/or leg meat, which have much better texture and flavor than the cardboard breasts we get in North America. The pattern recipe called for a whole 2 pound chicken cut into small pieces, so you could do that too.
  3. Fish Sauce:   This clear liquid is as essential to Southeast Asian cuisine as it was to Imperial Rome. For details see our Fish Sauce - Introduction page.
  4. Chilis:   The pattern recipe calls for "5 to 8 fresh long chilis", but her book doesn't define what a "long chili" is or even what color or hotness. I use 5 red Fresnos, seeded. Serranos would also be good, seeded or not and in whatever number you wish. This dish is supposed to be fairly hot. For details see our Chilis - Thailand &Southeast Asia page.
  5. Comments:   5 Fresnos made this curry absolutely perfect for my Southern California taste, but folks from the Frozen North might be distressed. If serving a mixed group (mixed chili preferences, that is) you can cut the chilis in half and present Hot Sauce at the table, as is sometimes done in Burma. A home made Burmese Chili Garlic Sauce would be elegant, but Huy Fong ("Rooster brand") Chili Garlic or Sambal Oelec sauces will work. If serving as a soup, cut the Chicken a bit smaller and cut the Opo into about 3/4 inch cubes. Add sufficient water to get the soupiness you desire.
  6. 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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