Keralan fried chicken with curry leaf mayonnaise

4, with extra mayonnaise leftover
60 minutes

Ingredients

  • 400g of chicken thigh, skinless and boneless, cut into 2.5cm pieces
  • 1l vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • 100g of plain flour
  • 100g of cornflour
  • 1 tbsp of Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp of ground turmeric
  • 4 pinches of chaat masala
  • 1 handful of curry leaves

Marinade

  • 300g of Greek yoghurt
  • 100g of buttermilk
  • 1 tbsp of Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp of ground turmeric
  • 3 green chillies, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch of coriander, finely chopped

Pickled mooli

  • 200g of mooli, peeled and finely sliced
  • 250ml of white wine vinegar
  • 250g of caster sugar
  • 1 star anise
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 Indian bay leaf

Curry leaf oil

  • 1.25l vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tbsp of mustard seeds
  • 20g of curry leaves
  • 1 1/2 whole dried kashmiri chillies
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground turmeric

To finish the mayonnaise

  • 4 egg yolks, large
  • 1 dash of lemon juice
  • caster sugar, to taste
  • sea salt, to taste

Method

1
Begin preparing the mayonnaise and pickling liquor for the mooli, as these can be done a day in advance. To make the curry leaf oil, bring the oil to 180°C, then add the rest of the ingredients. Instantly remove from the heat and leave to cool and infuse
  • 1.25l vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tbsp of mustard seeds
  • 1 1/2 whole dried kashmiri chillies
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 20g of curry leaves
2
Place all the ingredients for the pickled mooli (except the mooli) into a saucepan and gently warm until the sugar has dissolved. Leave to cool
  • 250ml of white wine vinegar
  • 250g of caster sugar
  • 1 star anise
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 Indian bay leaf
3
Once the curry leaf oil has cooled, strain it into a clean bowl or bottle and discard the whole spices. Place the egg yolks and lemon juice in a food processor and blitz. With the motor still running, gradually pour in a litre of the curry leaf oil until the mixture thickens and emulsifies. Season to taste with sugar and salt. This will probably make more mayonnaise than you need for this dish, but it will keep for 1 week in the fridge
  • 4 egg yolks, large
  • 1 dash of lemon juice
  • caster sugar, to taste
  • sea salt, to taste
4
The next day, make the marinade for the chicken. Mix together the yoghurt, buttermilk, chilli powder, turmeric, green chillies and coriander in a bowl. Add the chicken and mix to coat well, then cover and place in the fridge for 2 hours
  • 300g of Greek yoghurt
  • 100g of buttermilk
  • 1 tbsp of Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp of ground turmeric
  • 3 green chillies, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch of coriander, finely chopped
  • 400g of chicken thigh, skinless and boneless, cut into 2.5cm pieces
5
Place the mooli in a bowl and cover with the cooled pickling liquor, then set aside for 1-2 hours at room temperature
  • 200g of mooli, peeled and finely sliced
6
To cook the chicken, bring the vegetable oil to 180°C in a deep pan or kadai. Meanwhile, mix together the flour, cornflour, chilli powder and turmeric in a shallow bowl
  • 1l vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • 100g of plain flour
  • 100g of cornflour
  • 1 tbsp of Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp of ground turmeric
7
Lift the pieces of chicken out of the marinade and coat in the flour mixture, shaking off any excess. Deep-fry the chicken (in batches, if necessary) until golden brown. To ensure the chicken is cooked through, test the middle of the biggest piece of chicken with a thermometer; it should read at least 75°C
8
Drain the chicken on kitchen paper. Working quickly, add the fresh curry leaves to the hot oil and fry briefly until crisp, then drain these too
  • 1 handful of curry leaves
9
To serve, divide the chicken between serving bowls, then sprinkle generously with the chaat masala. Serve with the pickled mooli, fried curry leaves and the curry leaf mayonnaise
  • 4 pinches of chaat masala