Chettinad Chicken Pepper Masala

These are very hot little firecrackers from the orient. They can be used to add spice to almost any oriental dish. They dry very easily and can be stored and used this way for a long time.

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Serves: 4


To grind into paste:
Zeera / Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Dhaniya / Coriander seeds – 2 tbsp
Dry red chiles – 4-5
Kali Mirch / Whole black peppercorns – 2 tsp
Dalchini , Cinnamon sticck – 2 inch piece
Ilaichi , Green cardamom – 3-4
Saunf , fennel seeds – 1 tsp
Fresh grated coconut – ¼ cup
Ginger – 2 inch piece
Garlic – 10-12 cloves

For the curry:
Oil – 4 tbsp
Tejpatta / Bay leaf – 2
Sarson / Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Onion – 2 cups ( Chopped )
Green chiles – 2-3 ( Slit into halves )
Curry leaves – 2-3 sprigs
Chicken – 1 kg
Tomato – 1 and ½ cup
Salt to taste
Turmeric powder – 1 and ½ tsp

To grind into paste
Dry roast all the ingredients in a pan till they are slightly browned and fragrant.
Remove the pan from heat and cool.
Grind the ingredients in a blender to make a coarse paste.
Keep aside.
To make the curry
Heat oil in a pan.
When the oil is hot, add tejpatta and mustard seeds.
Let the seeds crackle.
Add onion and green chiles and fry till onion turns pinkish brown.
Add the chicken and fry on high heat for 3-4 minutes.
Add tomato, salt and turmeric powder along with a cup of water.
Cover the pan and let the chicken cook for 45-50 minutes on low heat.
Keep stirring in between.
Garnish with fresh coriander.
Serve hot with roti or rice.