Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Hot Chilli Chicken

Cookbook Countdown is a monthly cooking/baking event, which I'm co-hosting with Emily's Cooking (Makan2) Foray.  Everyone is welcome to join us. How does it work? To summarize, you may select a cookbook from your own cookbook collection, to cook or bake from each month. That selected book shall be your cookbook of the month. You may cook any recipes and as many recipes as you want from your selected book of the month. This is a fabulous way of using your cookbooks at least once! For more information on how to join Cookbook Countdown, please click here. 

To link to Cookbook Countdown Specials : BAKE, click here
To link to Cookbook Countdown #9, click here


My selected cookbook for this month at Cookbook Countdown #9 is 500 Curries, by Mridula Baljekar.

I absolutely love spicy food, and when I've read that this dish, as described in the book, "not for the faint-hearted, this delicious fiery, hot curry is made with a spicy chilli masala paste", of course I must cook this!

Upon going through the ingredients list, I must say that it does not really sound that spicy after all. I have therefore increased the chilli powder and the dried chillies to double the amount.

This is not a fiery dish for me, it is only mildly spicy. But it is quite tasty. We had this with plain fluffy white rice for dinner along with some turmeric cabbage stir-fry, Indian-style. 

Hot Chilli Chicken
(adapted from "500 Curries", Mridula Baljekar)
Serves 4
2 tbsp tomato puree (paste)
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
2 green chillies, roughly chopped
5 dried red chillies
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp sugar
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tbsp curry paste
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 onion, finely chopped
2 bay leaves
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
400gm can chopped tomatoes
2/3 cup water
8 chicken thighs, skinned
1 tsp garam masala
fresh green chillies, seeded and sliced, to garnish
chapatis and natural (plain) yoghurt, to serve

  1. Put the tomato puree, garlic, green and dried red chillies, salt, sugar, chilli powder, paprika and curry paste into a food processor or blender and process to a smooth paste. Alternatively, grind all the ingredients together to a paste using a mortar and pestle.
  2. Heat the oil in a large heavy pan or wok and fry the cumin seeds for about 2 minutes. Add the onion and bay leaves to the pan and fry for a further 5 minutes.
  3. Add the spice paste to the pan and fry for 2-3 minutes until it releases a fragrant aroma. Add the remaining ground spices and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the chopped tomatoes and the measured water to the pan. Bring the mixture to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes until the sauce thickens.
  5. Add the chicken and garam masala to the sauce. Cover the pan with a lid and simmer for about 25-30 minutes until the chicken is tender. Serve with chapatis and natural yoghurt, garnished with sliced green chillies.

I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #9 hosted by 


  1. That's a LONG list of spices!! The chicken looks so flavoursome.

  2. Yummm..... even by looking at it i know its going to be pretty spicy

  3. With all of those chilies, this would definitely be fiery for me but it does look delicious.

  4. The curry looks very appetising and flavourful!

  5. I guess spicy is a relative term. Looks tasty.