I grew up in Malaysia and Singapore and even though my family and I moved to Perth as a child, I still adore Asian food.
This is a quick Malaysian style curry. I’ve tweaked it so it’s a little healthier and lighter as it uses tinned tomatoes instead of coconut cream or milk. I’ve used chicken for this recipe but you can also make a vegetarian version using pan fried haloumi which is a cheese of Cypriot origins. I also added haloumi to my curry which I personally prefer over the chicken.
4 tablespoons coconut oil
1 large onion*
5 large cloves of garlic*
Thick slice of Ginger of about 5cm thickness* (approximately 1 tablespoon chopped ginger)
500 grams chicken breast or thigh (cut into bite size pieces)
(Substitute with 500 grams of pan fried haloumi for a vegetarian option)
3 tablespoons Ground Coriander
1 tablespoon Cumin
1 tablespoon Turmeric
1 teaspoon Paprika
1/2 teaspoon of ground Black Pepper
2 stalks of Curry Leaves
1 Kaffir Lime Leaf
1 tin of Tomatoes
4 peeled medium size Potatoes cut into quarters (you can leave them unpeeled if you prefer)
1 cup of Cauliflower florets
1 Capsicum cut into large squares (I used green, but you can use red or yellow or do away with capsicum altogether and use whichever veggies you like. See the power you wield?! :P)
Salt to taste
Sugar to taste (optional)
*Chopped or blitzed in the food processor or thermomix
In a medium size bowl, add your coriander, cumin and turmeric and pour in 1/4 to 1/3 cup warm water and mix into a thick paste.
In a large pot, over a medium flame heat the coconut oil and add onions and ginger and stir to prevent sticking or burning. Add more oil if necessary.
Once the onions have softened but not browned, add your curry paste and stir. Add your curry leaves (remove the stalks) and continue sautéing.
Stir in your garlic, paprika and pepper.
Add your tinned tomatoes (fresh chopped tomatoes if you prefer), potatoes, capsicum and cauliflower and simmer for 10 minutes. Slice your chilli and add to the mix. The chilli is optional but I do love chilli and would probably add 3 chillies if I didn’t have to share with the rest of my family who aren’t as fond of spicy food.
Season with 1 to 2 teaspoons of salt and 1 to 2 teaspoons of sugar. This step is really up to your taste buds :).
When the tomatoes have cooked down a little, add your chicken and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes until your chicken and vegetables have cooked through. Resist the urge to crank up the heat to a roaring boil as your chicken will end up tough and rubbery…..and that would be sad :(.
Dish up your curry and serve with rice or roti bread (flaky Indian flatbread).
Very thinly slice up your kaffir lime leaf and sprinkle with carefree abandon over your curry. The kaffir lime leaf gives a wonderful freshness and zing to the curry :).
Top with extra chilli if you’re brave!