Chicken Vepudu!

Naatu Kodi vepudu which translates to country chicken fry is a popular delicacy where I come from.  I don’t make chicken vepudu all that often but every once in a while I crave it.  Vepudu means a dry saute and this kind of dish goes very well as a accompaniment to sambar or daal.  This dish usually does not last till meal time in our house – we keep eating chicken pieces from the pan as we walk through the kitchen so I try  to hide it  as soon as I make it 🙂

It is a quick and simple dish to make and is quite a tasty side dish too.

chickenfry7fullsizerender-2

Ingredients:

  • Whole chicken – cut up in small pieces
  • Onions – 2 medium diced
  • Green chillies – 4 slit
  • Methi leaves – 1/2 cup (optional)*
  • Bay leaves – 1 or 2
  • Curry leaves – about 10
  • Coriander leaves – a few sprigs
  • Ginger-garlic paste – 3 tsps
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Red chilli powder – 2 tsps (or more or less to suit your taste)
  • Coriander powder – 1/2 tbsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Curd – 3 tbsp (optional)
  • Cashews – a handful (optional)
  • Garam masala – 1 tsp
  • Oil – 4 – 5 tbsp

Method:

  1. Wash chicken and marinate in turmeric powder, red chilli powder, salt, coriander powder and curds for about half hour.  Marinate the chicken in a wide saute pan that can go on to the stove
  2. Cook the marinated chicken; keep stirring so the bottom won’t stick.  The chicken will have enough water in it and the curds will also release water so there will quite a bit of water to cook the chicken in; cook until the chicken is almost done.  The water should evaporate but if there is some left that is fine
  3. Meanwhile heat oil and season with bay leaf; add cashews if using and when they brown add onions with curry leaves and slit green chillies
  4. Cook onions until they brown and add ginger garlic paste; saute until the paste is fried – about a few seconds – and add methi leaves; cook until the leaves soften…about a minute more
  5. Add the cooked chicken – along with any water left – and saute on high heat until the onion masala coats the chicken evenly and all the water evaporates.  Adjust salt and red chilli powder
  6. Add garam masala powder and coriander leaves.  Stir well and cook for a minute more
  7. Serve with rice and sambar or daal

*I usually get fresh methi, pick the leaves, wash them and freeze them.  Methi leaves can be added to almost everything – they lend a distinct flavor and aroma to non-vegetarian dishes – and so I have them handy in the freezer.  Dried leaves can be used too instead of fresh leaves but please reduce the quantities of dried leaves used since they are more concentrated than fresh leaves.

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