Route 79 : Burmese Curry
The effects of feeling hungry on the way home
November 30 2003
Well - I had a go at cooking a Burmese style chicken curry.
I have to admit that cooking this dish was very much an Indian/Chinese fusion experience: its effectively a Punjabi-style chicken dish - but without tomatoes or peppers - and instead: coconut milk and besan (gram flour) with a dash of Thai fish sauce at the finish.
Here is a Route79-style illustrated guide to cooking this exquisite dish:
First prepare all the ingredients:
8 medium-size chicken thighs - no bone - no skin - chopped
into bite-size chunks.
Fry the onions in some vegetable oil for a few minutes - until they are translucentish. Then add the spices - a teapoon of turmeric, a teaspoon of chillie powder, a teaspoon of salt, 2 teaspoons of coriander and 2 teaspoons of garam masala. Stir well.
Once the onions/spice mixture has been stirred well - add the chopped chicken thigh pieces - and stir fry on high heat:
Thoroughly coat the chicken in the onion/spice mixture - until the chicken has gone rubbery. Then add the pre-prepared chicken broth, as well as the bay leaves and cinnamon stick pieces:
Simmer the pot for around 20 minutes. Whilst that is simmering - add about half-glass of warm water to the gram flour powder and stir until all lumps are out. Sieve through a tea-strainer to make sure you remove all lumps of clumped gram flour - and then pour into chicken pot. Stir and then pour in the coconut milk. Stir thoroughly - at this point the pot should be thickening a bit. Keep stirring until you get to a consistent simmer. Leave it simmering with lid off for another 30 mins.
After the 30 mins of simmering - add a few drops of Thai fish sauce from the bottle and stir thoroughly:
Turn off the heat - and its done! Serve on a bed of freshly-cooked rice noodles - or else (as in my case) on a bed of freshly-cooked Basmati rice.
I really enjoyed cooking that - the coconut milk, gram flour and fish sauce add a completely different dimension to the sort of North Indian cooking that Im used to - but I certainly will be cooking something like this again!
Have you tried this? Even
if you haven't - let me know what you think!