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Chettinad Chicken Masala

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This is a traditional chicken curry that is very common in most of the Chettinad household and is best accompanied with Chicken Rasam.

Ingredients for the Masala
Coconut - 1/2 cup
Sombu - 1 teaspoon
Jeera - 1 teaspoon
kus kus - 1/2 teaspoon
Ginger - 1/2 inch
Garlic - 3 pieces
Chilli powder - 1.5 teaspoon
Corriander powder - 1 teaspoon

Grind the above ingredients to a smooth paste

Other Ingredients
Chicken - 1.5 pounds (chicken breasts)
big red onion - 1
plum tomato - 1

For seasoning 
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
/cloves - few
Sombu - little
Urad Dhal - little
peppercornes - little
curry leaves - little

Method
Pressure cook chicken with some little chili powder, turmeric powder and salt for about 1 whistle and 5 minutes. Then let it cool and save the chicken stock for making Chicken Rasam or any other dish. In a deep pan, add oil then the seasoning. then add finely chopped onions and tomatoes and cook well. To this add the ground masala and let it cook for about 15-20 minutes. To this add the cooked chicken and cook for 10 more minutes until the chicken is well blend with the masala. Serve hot on a bed of rice with some chicken rasam.


This is a very authentic Chettinad recipe that goes very well with white rice. Also this can be had as a soup and is one of the best comfort food when you have cold :-)

Ingredients:

For the Stock:

Chicken: All the non meaty parts from a whole chicken (reserve the meaty part for the chicken masalai).
You can also include the neck portion, liver and gizzard.
Turmeric Powder: 1/4 teaspoon.
Chili Powder: a pinch.
Salt

Pressure cook the above: 1 whistle + 15 minutes in simmer.

For the Rasam Powder:
1) Dry Red Chillis: 8
2) Coriander seed: 1 teaspoon.
3) Urad dhal: 1 teaspoon
4) Pepper: 1 teaspoon
5) Aniseeds: 1 teaspoon
6) Jeera: 1 teaspoon.
In a little ghee fry the above and grind coarsely.

For the Rasam:
Aniseed: little
Jeera: little
Pepper: little
Curry leaves: few
Tomatoes: 2 large
Tamarind paste: 1/4 teaspoon
Coriander leaves.

Garnishing (this is the secret step to the great tasting soup :-)
Small pearl onion: 2 nos
Garlic pod: 2 nos
(Coarsely crush both the ingredients).
Coriander leaves

Preparation:
1) Prepare the chicken stock and the rasam powder in parallel
2) In a pan, add ghee, then add the seasoning (Aniseed, Pepper and Jeera)
3) Then add curry leaves and the chopped tomatoes
4) Cook the tomatoes until oil oozes out
5) Add the chicken stock
6) Add the Rasam powder
7) Add the tamarind paste
8) Allow the whole mixture to boil for about 10 minutes
9) Then add salt and the secret seasoning.
10) Allow the mixture to boil for 5 more minutes and finally season with chopped coriander leaves.

If it is a bit spicy to drink this rasam, try it with some rice and ghee.


Banana Walnut Muffins

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Recently I have developed some interest in baking and wanted to try something very simple and quick that would satisfy my sweet tooth. So tried this recipe with some basic ingredients easy to find at home. The finished product was too good and the muffin was really moist and soft.

Ingredients for Banana Walnut Muffins

All Purpose Flour - 1.5 cups
Sugar - 3/4 cup
Finely chopped Walnuts - 1/2 cup
Baking powder - 1.5 teaspoons
Salt - 1/4 teaspoon
Ripe Bananas - 2
Canola Oil - 1/2 cup
Egg - 1
Yogurt - 3 tablespoons


Dry roast the walnuts in a pan for about 2 minutes until slightly brown and keep them aside.

Mash the bananas into a smooth paste. I used a food processor to get a smooth consistency. To that add one egg, the oil and yogurt and blend into a smooth paste

In a mixing bowl add the flour, sugar, walnuts, baking powder and salt. Mix them well

To this add the blended ingredients and mix well without any lumps.

In a muffin pan line muffin sheets and fill the pans with the prepared mixture.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and bake the muffins for about 18-20 minutes until brown. Insert a tooth pick into the center of the muffin to check if the muffin is cooked completely. Let the muffin cool for about 10 minutes and then enjoy it with a cup of coffee :-)