“Why don’t you drop in for lunch ? ” V suggested one day, “Our food is really simple and you can easily go back to work.” This was in the good old days when I actually worked outside the house and worried about meeting friends outside the office. One day I did manage a quick lunch at V’s house and was amazed to find that it was exactly the same menu day in and day out. Breakfast consisted of toast, butter, jam and cheese with one half boiled egg, and a pot of tea. Lunch was clear bone soup with bread and butter, boiled peas, carrots and beans, with a little bit of mashed potato, a chicken cutlet with some gravy and a dessert of jelly and custard. And, she told me this never ever varied – unless they were entertaining people over a meal in which case they asked the cook to make Indian food or some spaghetti and caramel custard. Of course, if the guests were really important then they catered out and asked for an appropriately exotic menu.
I was shocked when I heard this story. There are so many different kinds of food out there in the world – so many different fruit, vegetable and meat which can be cooked in a zillion ways. Why would one torture oneself with the same food day in and day out? I suppose these are the people who only eat to live. I, unfortunately live to eat and look forward to each meal with the anticipation of an explorer.
Today I was fed up of the usual onion tomato chicken curry that I often rustle up and scoured the net for something different. I was pleasantly surprised to find this easy Kerala Fried Chicken . The original recipe asks you to marinade the chicken for a long time, preferably over night but I did not have this luxury as it was meant for lunch. So I took:
- 2 chicken legs, skinned and cut into two
- 1 tspn coriander powder
- 1/2 tspn zeera powder
- 1/2 lemon juice + 1 tspn vinegar
- 1/2 tspn ground pepper
- 1 tspn garam masala powder.
I made this into a paste and rubbed it onto the chicken pieces that I had slashed so that the spices could penetrate.
I left this to marinade for around half an hour.
In the meanwhile I heated 2 tbspns of oil to which I added 1/2 cup finely sliced onions with two green chillies. I browned them and then added a stalk of curry leaves .
After an hour, I put the chicken into a pressure cooker and allowed it to cook for two whistles. After the pressure dropped, I put the chicken into the browned onion mix and continued frying till all the water was used up and the chicken acquired a nice glossy look.
I took it off the heat and served it with hot chapati.
Unfortunately the chicken got over before I could take a photo for this blog!
- 1/4 tspn red chilli powder
- 1 tspn garlic ginger paste