This is a another mouthwatering recipe from the coastal regions of south India , especially popular in Kerala and the Kongan region . Coconut is is the thickener cum flavor enhancer of choice here. The simple process of roasting the coconut adds a whole new depth of flavor to curries . This recipe requires a little more effort than the regular chicken curry with coconut , but is absolutely worth it . Give it a try and you will fall in love with it as well -Chicken Curry with Roasted Coconut .
The first step is to roast the shredded coconut. Traditionally freshly grated coconut was used, but more often than not I end up using fresh frozen or dried coconut . My rule of thumb is to halve the quantity if using dried coconut instead of fresh. Another important point to remember is that the fresh coconut tends to stick to the pan and gets unevenly roasted and burnt easily . To prevent this add a little oil to the pan and keep stirring often .
Heat a frying pan over medium heat and dry roast the coconut . If using fresh/frozen coconut refer to the instructions above. Once the coconut starts to turn golden add the sliced onions , garlic and ginger pieces . Reduce the heat and keep stirring and roast till the coconut turns brown and the spices are dry . Turn off the heat and add the spice powders – coriander , chili , turmeric, garam masala and salt . Set aside to cool. Once cooled grind to a smooth paste in a blender . Depending on the blender one might have to add a few spoons of water to facilitate grinding.
Finely chop the onions and tomatoes . Slit or cut the chilies . Heat 2 to 3 tablespoons of oil in a skillet over medium heat . When hot add the onions and cook till it turns soft (looks translucent as well ) . Add the tomatoes and chilies stir and cover with a lid . In a few minutes the tomatoes will soften . Remove the lid add the chicken pieces . Stir and cook for a couple minutes turning a few times . Add the ground paste and about 1/4 to 1/2 C water mix and cover with a lid . Cook over medium heat for 20 minutes . Remove the lid and taste . Add more salt if necessary . If using curry leaves sprinkle on top and cook uncovered until the gravy reaches desired consistency. Turn off the heat . Serve warm .
Originally published on Aug , 2016. Updated with pictures.