Hop Right In!

I believe that salt is to food, what food is to life. In right proportions, it can heighten the taste of what you eat..and in the wrong - destroy! Even the most delicious sweets come added with some salt...to taste!

As for me, I've never enjoyed cooking. And as contrary to my owning a food-blog as it may sound, I always think about daily, routine cooking as a chore. But my tryst with the pots and pans began when I got a kitchen all to myself...I began experimenting and exploring new worlds in my own home. Some outcomes were excellent and some plain disasters. Then sprouted the need to keep track of all those good ones...and hence this blog!

Here, I share those experiments that pleased more than one palate!

May 18, 2010

Chicken Chettinad

Yeah, yeah Chicken Chettinad. Sounds great I know. Tastes even better. But dont begin to assume I knew it the moment I got my hands on the chicken. (*thud* There goes my image in the dumps). We all love this dish, and it is on almost every menu card in nearly every Indian restaurant that serves up non-vegetarian Indian cuisine. So, over the past few weeks I was taken over by a sudden obsession to try out a new type of a gravy using Chicken. Something other than my regular C Cubed. It just had to be something spicy so this one came to my mind. I chanced on this recipe on Indian Food Forever, a website that I think carries quite a decent collection of recipes. The original recipe calls for poppy seeds. I normallly do not use them and did not have them on hand. If you do, then go ahead and 'pop' them in when you try this out. I am sure they'll render a great flavour!

Posted by Picasa

For the masala
1/2 Cup Grated coconut
1" stick Cinnamon
1tsp Fennel seeds
1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
1tsp Coriander seeds
3pcs Cardamom (Badi elaichi)
2 Cloves
1 Star anise
6-8 Whole red chilies
2 tsp Poppy Seeds (Optional. I have not used this)

Other Ingredients
2lbs Chicken, washed and cleaned, cut into bite sized pieces
1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
 1 Cup Onion, chopped
1 tbsp Ginger, chopped
2 tbsp Garlic, chopped
1 tsp Red chili powder
3/4 Cup Tomatoes, chopped
1 tsp Lemon juice
10-12 Curry leaves
Fresh coriander leaves, to garnish
1/2 cup Oil
Salt To Taste


- In a large wok/kadai, dry roast the ingredients for the masala
- Grind the roasted masala ingredients to a fine paste in the blender using minimum water
- Add the ginger and garlic to this paste in the blender and run it further to make a smooth paste/masala
- Heat oil in a heavy bottomed vessel
- Fry the onions till golden brown
- Toss in the curry leaves and allow to splutter
- Now add the ground paste and sauté for about a minute
- Add the tomatoes, red chili powder and turmeric powder and sauté.
- Add the chicken, mix and cook for 5 minutes and then add 2 cups of water and lemon juice
- Stir
- Add salt and cover and cook till the chicken is done. You could opt to pressure cook at this point.
- Serve piping hot chicken chettinad, garnished with coriander leaves along-side steamed rice, rotis or pooris



  1. I hadn't used poppy much before but I'm finding that I love cooking with it. It adds a slight nutty taste and richness to the sauce. Your chicken chettinad looks great!

  2. wow...love it...bful pics...droolworthy

  3. Even I havent tried poppy seeds ad of late seeing that many blogger buddies suggesting it ..
    But the curry is just mouthwatering and a wonderful click

  4. @ Veena - Yes, you're right. My mom adds it, my mom-n-law does'nt. And since most of my cooking 'education' happened only after marriage, my pantry of Indian spices et. al. pretty much resembles what my MIL normally has. But mom keeps telling me to try poppy seeds.. I should get my hands on them soon.

    @ Sanyukta - Thank you!

    @ Pavithra - Yup do try it with poppy seeds and let me know!

  5. I'm sold at the word Chettinad :D They are so flavorful

  6. Hey Deepti, I would surely to adopt u if you were in India... right now, take my virtual adoption ;)