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A good standard chicken curry. The secret to the curry is the 'rempah' or wet paste made from a multitude of fresh herbs and spices. Use this as a base recipe and then add extra chillies if you want it hotter the next time.
- 1 whole chicken, cut into pieces or 12 skinless chicken thighs
- 3 tablespoons oil (for cooking)
- 1 cup thin coconut milk
- 1⁄2 cup thick coconut milk
- 3 stalks lemongrass, bruised
- 15 shallots
- 10 dried chilies, soaked in hot water for 20 minutes or until soft
- 1 inch galangal
- 1 inch fresh ginger
- 4 cloves garlic
- 6 candlenuts (kemiri nuts)
- 1 tablespoon coriander powder
- 1 tablespoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon fennel
- 1 inch cinnamon stick
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- Pound or grind shallots, chillies, ginger, galangal, garlic and candlenuts into a paste.
- Add coriander, cummin, fennel and turmeric together in a small bowl and set aside.
- Heat oil in wok and gently fry shallots and chilli paste for 2- 3 minutes until fragrant.
- Add dry spices and fry, stirring occasionally for another 2 minutes.
- Add chicken pieces and lemon grass and cook, stirring frequently until chicken is well coated with spices.
- Add thin coconut milk and salt.
- Simmer uncovered, stirring from time to time until chicken is tender and gravy has thickened.
- (Approximately 20 minutes) Add thick coconut milk and cook for 2- 3 minutes.
- Serve with rice.