Chicken Cutlet

Doctors also can be good cooks 🙂 This recipe is from my ophthalmologist cousin Suriya, who specialises in low fat cooking. She served these cutlets when we had gone over for dinner, and we loved it. She was very happy to give the recipe. Her method used the entire chicken as she doesn’t get only the skinless, boneless breast.  I have modified the recipe by using chicken breast and also cooked the chicken using my own recipe for chicken stock. In this way, I get the cooked chicken for the cutlet and the stock for other dishes.

Chicken Cutlet - Kalas Kalai

Chicken Cutlet

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Kala’s Eral and Mangai Curry (Prawn and Unripe Mango Curry)

With unripe mangoes flooding the food stores, one has to find ways in which this can be used (most of them are not suitable for ripening). I recall reading about the combination of mango and prawns almost half a century ago. I don’t remember the type of masala used in that preparation. I have used a combination of vindaloo-type masala with unripe mango to give sourness to the preparation. I have also used sugar to give it a subtle Goan flavour, but this dish is not a proper west coast preparation. It’s very much a Kala’s Kitchen concoction 🙂

Kalas Eral and Mangai Curry - Kalas Kalai

Kalas Eral and Mangai Curry

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Calcutta Chicken Curry

I found this dish in my mother’s recipe book, which she had copied from her grandmother’s. I do not know if this dish is actually made in Calcutta 🙂 My great-grandmother hailed from Thanjavur, and her family were closely related to Vedanayagam Sastriar who was a Samasthana Kavignar (court poet) during King Serfoji II’s reign. I assume this recipe would have come through the court’s cooks as she was unlikely to have come across a Calcutta dish through other channels. It is very easy to prepare. My great-grandmother made this dish with mutton, but I tried it with chicken and found it to be vastly superior to the mutton version. This can be served with Khamiri Roti or Pooris.

Calcutta Chicken Cury - Kalas Kalai

Calcutta Chicken Cury

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Murungai Keerai and Vaerkadalai Poriyal (Drumstick Leaves and Peanuts Fry)

In Tamil Nadu, drumstick leaves have been sustaining the health of Tamilians because they are rich in a large number of nutrients. This is the reason why drumstick trees are planted almost in every household. Even hut dwellers have drumstick leaves growing next to their dwellings. I have already given a recipe for cooking drumstick leaves with prawns. This recipe combines groundnuts with drumstick leaves to give equivalent nourishment for vegetarians.

Murungai Keerai and Vaerkadalai Poriyal 1 - Kalasi Kalai

Murungai Keerai and Vaerkadalai Poriyal

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Kala’s Pudhina Chicken (Mint Chicken Curry)

May is the month when Tamil Nadu experiences extreme heat. Fresh mint leaves are widely available as everyone believes in their ability to cool. I got a big bundle of the freshest mint leaves and tried to find a recipe that used mint leaves, but wasn’t satisfied with the ones I found as they involved a lot of labour. I came up with this Pudhina Chicken recipe that could be prepared quickly as I didn’t want to spend too much time in the kitchen in this heat.

Kalas Pudhina Chicken - Kalas Kalai

Kala’s Pudhina Chicken

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Fried Pork Ribs

I have always collected recipes from my students. The recipe for fried pork chops was given to me by a Chinese student, Yen Swan Chie, way back in 1972. I modified it for pork ribs and was very pleased with the results. It’s a big hit with guests, so make sure you make plenty 🙂 Serve with vegetable fried rice.

Fried Pork Ribs - Kalas Kalai

Fried Pork Ribs

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Butter Chicken Curry

Butter Chicken was introduced to Chennai by tandoori restaurants. I used to frequent the Piccadilly Tandoor restaurant in the late ’70s especially for their divine butter chicken. I longed to make this at home, but I was never satisfied with the results I obtained from recipes I found in books. It was only after watching several YouTube videos that I understood the technique of making butter chicken, and starting making it regularly at home. This recipe gives a better butter chicken than what many restaurants serve – if I do say so myself 🙂 Butter chicken is usually served with naan at restaurants. I also usually have it with Homemade Naan, but this time I tried it with homemade bread, and the result was just as heavenly!

Butter Chicken Curry - Kalas Kalai

Butter Chicken Curry

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