Sri Lankan Chicken Kalambu

November 07, 2016

Sri Lankan Chicken Kalambu

I stumbled upon this recipe whilst clearing out some old paperwork so its origin is rather vague I'm afraid. Scrawled in my best Dr's hand writing I do know that it is most likely Sri Lankan (roasted Jaffna curry powder is a big clue!)  but for the life of me I can not remember who I persuaded to part with this. I'm glad I found it though, when I tested it out the other night it was greeted with a big thumbs up and I was told to put it up on here. 

The dish will most likely be prepared by families who have connections with Malaysia - the cooking of potatoes in coconut milk is fairly common. This dish is on the hot end of the scale but the coconut tempers it a little. I really enjoyed this dish, I hope you do too. 

Ingredients for 2:

2 Chicken breasts or thighs
1 Onion, finely chopped
240ml Coconut milk 
Fennel seeds, 1 teaspoon
2 tablespoons Jaffna Curry Powder
4 Red chillies
Ginger, thumb sized piece
10 Curry leaves 
2 tablespoons veg oil
Lime juice - ½ tablespoon
1 medium sized potato, peeled and cut into 2cm cubes
60-70ml warm water


Dice the onion, chillies and the ginger into the smallest pieces you can and set aside. Dice the chicken into 1 inch cubes.



Over a medium heat dry roast the fennel seeds until they turn golden brown, careful not to burn them. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil and fry onions until they turn soft, add the ginger pieces, green chillies, curry leaves and cook until the onions turn golden, about 8 minutes

Now add the chicken, salt, curry powder, the warm water, and cook covered for 5 minutes.

Next add the potato pieces, stir through and cook for another five minutes in the liquid that is in the pan.

Now add the coconut milk. The liquid should be just above the level of meat and potato.

Cook on gentle heat until meat is cooked, simmer till gravy thickens a little or to your liking. I cook for about 10 minutes on a very low heat and have a thick gravy at the end. 

Remove from the heat and stir through the lime juice. Serve with basmati or some breads. 

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