Recipe - Chettinad Pepper ChickenMarch 02, 2016
Say the words 'Chettinad Cuisine' and instantly the mind conjures up images of spicy food. But the truth is that Chettinad food is so much more than just chillies, of course.
Know Your Cuisine: Chettinad.
- Originating from the Chettinad region in Tamil Nadu, the unique feature of this cuisine is the freshly ground, fragrant blend of spices used in the masalas.
- It is considered to be one of the spiciest flavour profiles in Indian cuisine.
- While the presentation may often appear simple, the compexity of flavours arises from the perfect mixture of various spices including not just pepper and turmeric but also star anise, cloves, bay leaves, fennel, fenugreek et al.
- Adapting to the dry and humid Chettinad region resulted in another unique characteristic of their cooking - the use of sun dried vegetables & meats, a technique perfected to preserve food for the off-seasons.
- The long coastline does mean that they are masters of seafood too though, excelling in fish, prawn and crab dishes. And yes, they too are very much on the spicier side.
This version of Chettinad Pepper Chicken does away with the usual vegetables like onions and tomatoes and aims to allow the flavourful spices to be the star of the show.
The final product is an absolutely gorgeous chicken dish that any Chettinad cuisine aficionado will tell you goes brilliantly with rice or rice based preparations like appams, idlis and idiappams, with a nice chilled buttermilk to calm your palate.
INGREDIENTS:Chicken pieces... 1/2 kg,
Ginger... a small piece
Garlic... 8 cloves
Pepper... 4 teaspoons
Oil/ghee... 50 gms
Turmeric powder... 1/4 teaspoon
Cinnamon... 1/4 inch piece
Water... 1 cup
Salt... as required
Ghee... 3 tablespoons
- Prepare a paste by grinding garlic, ginger, pepper and coconut.
- Heat ghee in a vessel & add cinnamon, cloves and turmeric. Fry till you get a nice aroma.
- Now add the chicken pieces and the ground masala.
- Saute well. Add 1 cup water and cook the chicken.
- When the chicken is almost done, keep a pan on flame and add 3 teaspoons of ghee.
- Fry the cooked chicken in a low flame till it turns crispy.
- Serve hot with rice or appams.