The addition of canned tomatoes add a nice tang to this unique Cape Malay Chicken Curry recipe. This is a mildly spicy curry for everyone.
I made this cape Malay chicken curry recipe not long ago and thought I can start training myself making curries more often with this recipe.
As far as I know, this is not an authentic Malaysian curry. The name Cape comes from the Western Cape province in South Africa where a good number of Malaysians dwell, and whom originated this recipe.
I must admit that I am not a curry expert. I am not an expert making very authentic curries but I do enjoy eating various types from all over the region, though.
For living in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, you can get really delicious curries from everywhere in the city. Malaysian, Indian, Pakistani, Lebanese, Middle Eastern, African… you name it.
Maybe because there are so much to choose from and so easily accessible, I just take my family to the nearest restaurant whenever we get the curry craving kicking in. No wonder I never bother to cook curries at my own kitchen.
The flavor of this curry is really nice and easy to get used to for those who are the curry beginners. The addition of either diced tomatoes or crushed tomatoes brings a slight tang to the over all flavor but not over-powering the entire dish.
Hope you like it. My family thoroughly enjoyed it.
Cape Malay Chicken Curry Spice Mixture
First of all, gather up your spices in the mortar or in a mini processor.
Correction: The fennel seeds and coriander seeds are switched on the photo above.
Start grind them together. Oh, the aroma…
Until they get to combine very well.
I picked most the cardamom pod skins and discarded them. One of the Indian lady at the shop where I purchased the spices told me to do that.
Chop onion, garlic, and ginger finely.
Saute onion and ginger in some oil over medium heat until soft.
Add the spices and cook together until the holy fragrance fills up your kitchen.
Add crushed tomatoes. You can used canned diced tomatoes as well.
Bring the sauce to gentle boil.
Add the chicken pieces. Chicken thighs, drumsticks, or breast. bone-in pieces will bring better flavor.
Cover with a lid and lower the heat to simmer for 20 minutes.
Add garlic, brown sugar, and lemon juice. Stir all together to combine.
Cover the lid again but with a little opening for the steam to escape, continue to simmer for another 15 minutes. And your curry will be ready to serve. Actually with any braised food, it tastes much better on the next day which I did.
The chickens are so tender and full of flavor. Loved the aroma and the slight tang from the tomatoes. It was just perfect for our Thursday night dinner.
More Delicious Curry Recipes
- Beef Massaman Curry
- Easy Ground Beef Curry Recipe (Beef Keema Curry)
- Chicken Pumpkin Curry with Homemade Thai Yellow Curry Paste
Cape Malay Chicken Curry
- 4 tbsp oil
- 1 onion medium, finely chopped
- 2 tsp hot pepper flakes or fresh hot peppers to taste
- 2 tbsp ginger finely chopped
- 1 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
- 2 tsp fennel ground, or 4 tsp whole fennel seeds
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1/2-1 tsp black pepper coarsely ground
- 15 cardamom pods whole pods
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp garam masala
- 14 oz can crushed tomatoes or diced tomatoes
- 1 1/2 lb chicken pieces
- 2 tsp garlic finely chopped
- 2 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 -3 tsp salt
- Put the 7 spices — from the coriander seeds down to the garam masala — in a mortar and pestle or in a coffee grinder. pound them together so the cardamom pods burst and the whole thing becomes a mess of spices.
- Heat the oil in a pot, add the onion and ginger over fairly high heat, and stir occasionally for a few minutes. Add the spices and stir for 2 minutes. You might need to add more oil (spices slurp up oil as they fry.)
- Add the can of chopped tomatoes and stir. Cook until everything bubbles up together.
- Add the chicken pieces, and stir to coat well, keeping heat high until everything is bubbling away. Turn the heat down, put on a lid, and simmer for about 20 minutes.
- Add the garlic, sugar, lemon juice and salt to the curry. Cover with lid but leave a small opening for a steam to escape; simmer for 15 minutes or longer. Taste the sauce, and adjust seasoning according to your taste.
- Near the end of cooking, skim off extra oil/fat with a spoon, as it collects in corners of the pot, if needed.