Monday, October 23, 2017

Recipe : Cambodian Chicken Samla Curry

I got this recipe from Gousto Cooking as part of a box that I had ordered.

Whenever I know I don’t have the time to plan menus and do a proper shop of fresh groceries (meat/fish/veggies), I order a box from them and it works out quite well. I opt for the quick to cook ones and a meal is normally ready in about 30 minutes. Fresh, healthy, balanced, tasty. Although, I wish they gave the option to change all rice to brown rice.

This Cambodian Chicken Samla Curry is definitely one for the recipe books. The Gousto recipe can be viewed here. I have made a few minor changes and this recipe includes my changes.

Their quantities are just enough for a meal for two without second helpings, I have adjusted the recipe below for a little more. You can make the gousto quantities, but then I would recommend adding on an extra salad or dessert or something else to your meal.


Ingredients :
150 gms basmati rice (about 2 katori)
500 gms boneless chicken (I prefer thighs, but for this recipe, breast will also work) cut in strips
1 tin 400ml coconut milk
2-3 cloves of garlic or 1.5 tsp garlic paste
20 gms ginger or 2 tbsp ginger paste
4-5 green chillies (you can skip this or adjust heat to taste)
1.5 tsp turmeric powder
1 fresh lemon grass stalk
1.5 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp sugar
3-4 dried kaffir lime leaves
1 tsp vegetable or olive oil
30 gms roasted peanuts
1 romano pepper (or red capsicum / bell pepper)
100 gms mangetout or snow peas or beans
salt to taste


Method :
Boil a kettle or a pot of water.

Gently bash the lemongrass with a rolling pin, cut it down the middle lengthways (you won't be able to cut through the hard end near the root, so just chop that off)
Remove the tough outer layers and root end, but keep them for later. Try to keep these parts as whole as possible.

Chop the softer inner stem[s] finely
Peel and finely chop (or grate) the ginger.
Peel and finely chop (or grate) the garlic
Finely chop the green chilli.
If you have a mortar and pestle or food processor, just quickly grind them all together, its faster and results in a much smoother curry.

Rinse out the rice, but don't soak it.
Choose a pan with a lid.
Put the rice in this pan.
Put the tough lemon grass leaves and root on top (don't put them at the bottom, they become more difficult to discard before serving)
Add 300 ml hot water.
Add a pinch of salt.
Bring to the boil (without covering the pan) over a high heat
Once boiling, reduce the heat to very low and cook, covered, for 10-15 min or until all the water has absorbed and the rice is cooked
Once cooked, remove from the heat and keep covered until serving

Open the tin of coconut milk, if it isn't full to the brim, you can add the following ingredients to the tin, else mix them in a large bowl.
Add the kaffir lime leaves, fish sauce and sugar – this is your coconut stock.

Heat a large, wide-based pan (preferably non-stick) with a drizzle of vegetable oil over a medium-high heat
Once hot, add the chicken strips and cook for 3-4 min
Add the turmeric powder and cook for 1 min further or until fragrant

Slice the Romano pepper into rings or julienne the bell pepper, discarding the stalk and any seeds
Once chicken is fragrant, add the sliced pepper, ground/chopped chilli, garlic, ginger and lemongrass and cook for 2-3 min further

Add the coconut stock and mange tout/snow peas/beans and cook for 6-8 min or until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce has thickened to a curry-like consistency.

Chop the coriander leaves, Add the stem ends to the curry in the finals stage, but reserve the leaves for garnish.

Crush the roasted peanuts with a rolling pin (keep them in a bag so you don't lose them) or a quick whir in a food processor. You want it crushed, not ground.

Discard the lemon grass stems from the rice.

Serve the Cambodian Chicken Samla Curry with the lemongrass rice to the side

Tip: for fancy presentation, press the rice into small bowls and turn out

Garnish with the crushed peanuts and coriander leaves

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