It is common that during festive season, most families especially the Nyonyas would prepare at least one curry chicken dish. But, it wasn’t so at my mother in-law’s place during this year’s Chinese New Year. She has prepared a menu without curry chicken from the eve until after. For me, it seems like something is missing or incomplete without a curry chicken. Honestly, I do miss this dish then. When I came back to my ‘nest’ after a week, this is the first curry I prepared in my kitchen.
You may be wondering why I didn't cook a pot of it then. The situation was, I couldn't as I was supposed to prepare dishes with ingredients that were bought by my in-law. She didn't buy the ingredients for curry chicken. You may also be wondering why I'm sharing this post long after CNY. It's because I was so busy right after the CNY with company accounts to prepare for submission etc. I'm back now, what a relief.
Coming back to this dish, there is no usual frying or cooking over the stove. This is curry chicken baked in an oven. First, I prepared the paste which is then fried, marinate the chicken pieces with it, place them in foil trays and just baked them for 30 minutes. While baking, my kitchen was filled with the nice aroma of a yummy curry.
So this is it, aromatic, tasty and spicy baked curry chicken which I considered a rather healthy version as not too much oil is used to sauté the curry paste. Isn't this awesome.
Recipe adapted from Yum Yum Magazine No. 87 with modifications
2 large chicken whole legs – skin removed and cut bite size pieces
1-2 blades pandan leaves – washed and cut into sections
1 tsp salt to taste
3 tbsp oil[blend and mix]
4 shallots - peeled
2 stalks lemongrass – cut small pieces
4 red chillies – cut small pieces [I added some small chillies]
50 ml coconut milk
50 ml water
½ tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
- Season chicken with salt. Set aside in the fridge.
- Blend the ingredients for curry paste until fine.
- Heat up a non stick wok, sauté blended curry paste in oil until aromatic and oil separates. Seasoned with salt and sugar, then add in the coconut milk and water. Bring to boil until fragrant and paste is slightly thick. Cool before marinating chicken with it. You can prepare until this stage and bake the chicken just before serving.
- Arrange chicken pieces in an aluminium foil tray, top with pandan leaves and cover with a piece of foil. Seal the edges well.
- Heat oven to 200 degrees C, then baked chicken for 30 minutes or until cooked through.
- Remove and serve hot.