Chittagong Chicken Recipe:
A delicious Bengali cuisine, Chicken cooked in thick Chittagong style gravy.
No matter how much I love to travel, to eat-out at awesome places but I have to admit that there’s no place like Home. Especially after eating out for almost a week the comfort of home food is unmatched, so ever since we returned on Saturday we’d been gorging on home cooked Dal-Chawal (Lentils-Rice) until Mr.H suggested ‘how about some home-style Chicken and Chapatti tonight’.
I decided to do a chicken recipe that’s been on my mind for quite some time, if you are taking guesses let me make it easy and remind you of my recent wonderful Bengali Cuisine experience (click here to read about it). As a matter of fact that we’ve ordered this recipe atleast 4 times out of our total 5, it is without any doubt Mr. H’s favourite dish here, so I decide to test my culinary experience and give it a try at home. It did however take a little research before I could produce this recipe for us to enjoy, cherish and include in our recipe journal. A quick google could not help so I went back on technology and used our dear phone. I called up an old Bengali friend’s mom, who is an awesome cook, heard and told all stories of how life has fared until today and cajoled her into blurting her secret. I took their tips, used my own approximations and here’s a recipe for a delicious Chittagong Chicken for you to try. I’d not claim that my chicken turned out to be an exact replica of what you get at the restaurant but was certainly as close as home cooking could possibly get. What is important I guess is that we did not give up until the wok was wiped clean and we had licked the thick gravy off our fingers.
- 1/2 kg Chicken pieces (I’ve used only the thighs)
- 8-9 dried whole red chillies
- 4 tbsp & ½ tsp coriander seeds
- 1 tsp garam masala pwd
- 6 medium onions
- 1 tbsp garlic paste
- ½ tsp dry red chilli paste or powder
- 1 tsp deggi mirch/chilli (non hot chilli powder for flavour and colour)
- 2 tbsp cashew nuts paste (approx 12-15 cashews with a tbsp water should make that amount of paste)
- Salt to taste
- Mustard Oil for cooking
- 1 cup water or Chicken Stock
- In a wok dry roast 4 tbsp coriander seeds and broken whole red chillies till they are fragrant, rigorously stirring in between. Run this in a grinder into powder.
- Clean Chicken and marinate it with the above powder, 1 tbsp mustard oil, garlic paste, a little salt and red chilli paste for atleast 1-2 hours, its best kept overnight.
- When ready to cook, cut 1/3rd of the onions into fine slices and make the rest into a thick paste.
- Now heat about 2-3 tbsp mustard oil in an Indian Kadahi or wok or any deep skillet, add remaining coriander seeds onion slices and fry till translucent pink then add the paste and fry together till some oil starts to ooze out.
- Then add the marinated chicken and deggi mirch pwd. Fry on medium flame until oil starts to ooze out and then add water and cover cook untill the chicken is cooked. Remove the lid, check and add salt to taste and turn the flame on high and cook until the gravy thickens.
- Add the cashew paste stir well and cook for a minute and then remove from heat. Serve hot with Luchi or simple chapatti (Indian breads).
Dos and Don’ts:
- This is a Bengali cuisine which is essentially cooked with mustard oil, however in case you can’t bear the pungent smell of the oil do use any other cooking oil.
- Also an adjustment in the quantity of chillies used might be required, though the sweetness of the onions is kind off offset with chillies so the dish won’t turn out too hot.
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