Spicy on the outside, succulent meat on the inside, this fried chicken recipe from Kerala will make you forsake Colonel Sanders' fried chicken
If you're strutting down the busy bylanes of any city in Kerala, chances are you'll be met with a welcoming aroma from the street side shops or stalls, frying up something delicious. An inquisitive mind would wander in and be greeted with fried chicken, but not just any fried chicken, Payyoli chicken fry. A signature dish that is attributed to the port city of Payyoli, in Calicut, in the Northern Malabar coast of Kerala, this spicy, dry fried chicken dish soon caught fire in other parts of Kerala as well. Marinated in dry red chilly paste and a host of spices and then deep fried in coconut oil, the chicken comes out juicy and flavourful from the inside and crispy and spicy from the outside. Paired with Kerala style parotta and chillies, coconut and curry leaves fried in the same oil as the chicken, this humble delicacy is a must-have if you're ever visiting the state.
A marked departure from the breaded and coated fried chicken we've come to relish of the years, this fried chicken is reddish in appearance due to the marination from the kashmiri red chillies and the flavour notes of curry leaves, coriander, garam masala gives it that desi tweak which is all the more satisfying. If you're not drooling already at the thought of it, here's a detailed recipe for you to make this dish at home to cherish with your friends and family.
-Into a bowl add chilli powder, Kashmiri chilli and green chilly paste, garam masala, ginger-garlic paste, curry leaves, vinegar/lemon juice, turmeric powder, coriander powder and salt. Pour water into it to turn it into a thick paste of marinade.
-Score the chicken pieces and add it into the marinade. Ensure equal coverage on all the pieces and keep it in the fridge for at least an hour.
-After an hour, add the rice flour into it and mix well, this will help the marinade stick to the chicken pieces and fry crisply on the oil.
-Add the coconut oil in a deep walled pan and fry the marinated chicken pieces. The coconut oil is a must if you're to achieve the authentic Payyoli chicken fry experience.
-Once all the chicken has been fried in batches, Into the same oil, add grated coconut, some coconut pieces, green chillies and curry leaves and fry them. These won't take long to fry.
-Add the fried coconut, chillies curry leaves into the chicken pieces and serve hot with lemon wedges and a plate of parotta to go along with it.