Friday, October 15, 2010

Simple Pleasures of Life

Recipes:
Peri-peri Chicken
Crunchy Baked Chicken

The highlight of my usual week day is returning home from work to my 3 year old son. By the time I reach my house, I would usually be tired and at times, frustrated. And though I have the key to my house, I don't use it, because the next few moments are the ones I am eagerly waiting for. The moment I ring the door bell, I can hear the pitter-patter of tiny feet running towards the door. The door opens a little and a small face with a big grin can be seen. It would be my son. Seeing his smile makes every difficulty seem worthwhile and I would feel warm and fuzzy and loved again. Every tiring moment in the day is suddenly forgotten and my energy is renewed. And as I walk into the house, he either hugs me or calls me to show me what he's been doing. Such simple things make us happy - an honest smile, a listening ear, a shoulder to lean on, a nice meal...

Here are 2 really simple yet delicious and healthy ways to make chicken. They are guaranteed to make your heart sing and your stomach happy. The actual work involved in this is very less.

By the way, this post is dedicated to my friend H who is away from his mother-land and is starting out a new life in another country. He is experimenting in cooking and trying to recreate the wonderfully comforting taste of his mom's cooking. So H, these are really easy recipes for you to try. Since you like spicy food, you will definitely like the first one. I have baked the chicken. In case you don't have an oven, this tastes fabulous fried as well (yes! I did try it). And since you are slim and fit and have a healthy heart that is always singing along with a full-fledged orchestra, you can eat fried food without any bad consequences on your health.

Those of you who are counting calories like me or if your arteries are begging for mercy, then the baked version will be a lot better.

The first recipe is for peri-peri chicken. The first time I had this was from Nandoos restaurant. The moment I tasted it, I knew I was in love - in love with the combination of flavours. I always wanted to recreate this at home. And then I came across this recipe in Latha's blog. I halved the recipe and made it with just 1/2 a kilo of chicken. I also made a few changes. I used dry red chillies ground coarsely as I could not find paprika in the shops here and used lime juice instead of lemon juice. I also omitted the fresh red chillies as I was afraid that would make the dish too hot for my son.

The other recipe is also very very simple (Did I already mention that?) and I'm not sure how I got this recipe. Though I've tried it multiple times to make changes in order to perfect it. It tastes a lot like KFC. Only that it is not fried but baked. And since this is Bangalore and not Kentucky - should we call it BBC? (nah) Crunchy Baked Chicken it is.

I used chicken wings for these recipes as they cook faster. But then again any part of the chicken can be used.


So here are the recipes.

PERI-PERI CHICKEN
(Recipe: Adapted from Latha's blog)


Ingredients:
Chicken wings cut into 2 pieces and tips cut - 6-7 or 1/2 kg of any other piece of chicken
Lime juice - 2 Tbsp
Olive oil - 2Tbsp
Red chilli powder - 1/2 Tbsp
Garlic (crushed) 1/2 Tbsp
Dry red chillies coarsely ground - 1/2 Tbsp
Oregano - 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste.

Update: I made this again and this time, I used double the amount of marinade for the same quantity of chicken. That made for a nice and spicy outcome. so if you like your chicken hot and spicy, then double the amount of marinade :)

Mix everything except the chicken to make the marinade. After adjusting the salt to your likes, you will realise that you should have made double the quantity as it was so yummy, you couldn't stop tasting it :) (You can also make double the quantity and keep half of it to be used as a dipping sauce with the chicken)

Make horizontal slits on the chicken wings so that the marinade can seep into it. Rub the marinade onto the chicken pieces and leave it for an hour.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C. Bake the chicken wings for about 40 - 45min or so. The other chicken pieces will take about 15 min longer to cook than chicken wings Be sure to turn over the pieces after about half the time. Also keep basting the chicken with the marinade every 15 min or so.

If you are going to deep fry the chicken, then heat some oil in a pan enough to cover the chicken pieces and then fry the chicken pieces on both sides till they are done.

Serve with curd or marinade kept aside for dipping sauce.

Serve with a salad for LCHF diet.

CRUNCHY BAKED CHICKEN





Ingredients:


Chicken wings cut into 2 pieces and tips cut - 6-7 or 1/2 kg of any other piece of chicken
Chilli powder - 3 tsp
Pepper powdered - 1 tsp
Plain flour - 8 Tbsp
Quick cooking oats - 8 Tbsp
Egg - 1
Milk - 2 tsp
Salt to taste
Olive oil - 1-2 Tbsp

Make horizontal slits on the chicken pieces. Mix the chicken pieces with salt and 2 tsp chilli powder and keep marinated for an hour.

Dry roast the oats in a pan for about 5 minutes stirring continuously till the raw smell goes away. Make sure that the oats do not change colour but has a crunch to it after the roasting. Then add the plain flour as well and roast for another 10 seconds more and switch off fire. Immediately transfer this mixture to another bowl that is at room temperature and let it cool for about 5 min. You can omit this dry roasting if you are planning to fry the chicken.

In the meantime beat the eggs with milk, salt and a pinch of chilli powder in another bowl.

To the flour and oats mixture, add salt to taste, pepper and the remaining chilli powder.

Dip one chicken piece in flour and oats mixture first and coat it well.
Then dip the same chicken piece in the egg mixture and ensure that it is coated well.
And then again dip that chicken piece into the flour and oats mixture and make sure that all the sides are well-coated.
Keep mixing the oats and flour mixture after each dip to ensure that it is uniformly mixed. Else all the oats tend to be on top and the flour at the bottom.
Repeat the same with all the chicken pieces.

Place the chicken pieces on a roasting tray and drizzle the olive oil on top of the pieces.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C and bake the chicken wings for 30 min - 15 min on either side For the other chicken pieces keep it about 15-20 min longer than chicken wings Be sure to turn them over after about half the time.

In order to make the coating golden brown, crisp and cooked, turn the oven setting to grill after this and place the roasting tray on the top shelf and grill for 2-5 min on either side. This grilling is very important to the final taste and look of the dish.

If you do not have the grill option in your oven, just place the baked chicken pieces on a iron griddle over a medium flame and dry roast it on either side for a couple of minutes till the coating gets a nice golden brown colour.

If you are going to deep fry the chicken, then heat some oil in a pan enough to cover the chicken pieces and then fry the chicken pieces till they are a nice golden brown colour. Turn the pieces over to ensure even browning.

A tip from my SIL and brother who tried this recipe. If you like it spicy and are planning to increase the amount of chilli powder used to marinate the chicken pieces, then it is a good idea to dry roast the chilli powder over a low flame before the using it. This will avoid any raw chilli powder taste in the final product.

A closer look at the crunchy coating.





Can you believe it? It is baked and yet it has such a crunchy coating.

13 comments:

  1. Hi Ammu Chechi.I found your recipie very attractive!!!I am thinking of trying it..

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  2. Please do and let me know how it turned out :)

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  3. ammu chechi, trying it out tday for dinner :) shall let u know the result tom if v survive ;)

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  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  5. Will try this out over weekend... its been long time i cooked some thing hardcore... and thanks for the recipes... it looks bit complicated... i hope i dont mess it up ;)

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  6. Cool! Do let me know how it turns out! The first one is really easy.. just marinate and fry (or bake)! And compared to the 42km marathom u just completed, this is gonna be a piece of cake (er.. chicken :P)!

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  7. Done!!! i wld say it wasn't bad... i so wish i had followed ur receipe to the core... first i cldn't find oregan :( so misd it and second i added more chilli to compensate for it... it turned out quite well but more of tandoori kind than peri peri... il definetly try it one more time...

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  8. oh that's a nice twist to the recipe :) omit the oregano and u get tandoori style :) I'm sure Oregano will be there in the super-markets there. We always get it with Dominos pizza here in the small sachets.

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  9. That fried chicken looks so good!!! though I don't eat chicken anymore but sometimes it looks so appealing to my eyes! thanks for following!!! I'll keep reading your post!

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  10. Yum! KFC and Nandos all together!

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  11. Wooowwww lookssssssssssssssss soooooooo yumm and inviting.....this recipe def goes into my recipe box........looks delish

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  12. It seems to be very delicious and finger licking dish. I must say I always love any type of chicken related recipes. I think I will prepare it this weekend's party at my home. Can't wait to taste it. Thanks fot the excellent recipe. keep updating us with such brilliant posts. Take care

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