Malay chicken and potato stew

    1 hour 20 min

    I usually call this a stew rather than a curry, purely on the basis that unlike most Malay curries, this is extremely mild and the spice paste (rempah) has very few ingredients. Serve it with rice and a pickle (my preference is for an aubergine pickle).

    London, England, UK
    2 people made this

    Serves: 6 

    • For the spice paste
    • 1 handful coriander leaves
    • 2.5cm piece root ginger
    • 3 cloves garlic
    • 1 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder
    • 1 medium red chilli
    • 1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
    • For the stew
    • 2 tablespoons ghee or oil
    • 2 onions, finely sliced
    • 1.3kg chicken, cut into pieces, or 6 large chicken thighs
    • 900ml hot water
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 4 medium potatoes, cut into sixths
    • lemon wedges

    Prep:20min  ›  Cook:1hr  ›  Ready in:1hr20min 

    1. For the spice paste grind all ingredients into a smooth paste (either use pestle and mortar or small electric hand mixer).
    2. Meanwhile heat ghee in a pan and fry the sliced onions until soft and just turning colour.
    3. Add the spice paste, mix well and fry over a very low heat until the ghee separates, a good 20 minutes. Stir frequently and if mix starts to stick to the base of the pan add a bit of water to just deglaze the pan.
    4. Add the chicken pieces and stir until mixed well and chicken is coated with the spice mix. Add the water and salt and bring quickly to the boil. Turn heat down low, cover pan and simmer until the chicken is cooked.
    5. About 20 minutes or so before chicken has finished cooking add the potatoes. Towards the end uncover the pan and allow sauce to reduce and thicken.
    6. Taste and adjust seasoning before serving, and serve hot with lemon wedges.


    If you would like to reduce the amount of fat, remove the chicken's skin. You can also substitute either sweet potatoes or pumpkin for the potatoes.

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