Wednesday, August 20, 2014


We eat out a lot and one of my favourite cuisines to try is Thai.If you ask me what's so Thai about this Ginger Chicken,kindly wait until you listen to the whole story. So, on Saturday night we found ourselves driving to our most favourite Thai restaurant in town and I found myself ordering the same old thing we order every. single. time.I don't like certain things to change and that order I place there,never changes!I may add a few things more, but, their Thai fried rice remains on the order.
We brought back the leftovers and Jobin had it for a snack two days back. There must have been only a few tablespoons worth of fried rice and even I took a bite from it. Only after having that did I realise that I shouldn't have had it because it was late in the night and too late to go out to have some more. Ian was fast asleep by then! I watched Jobin relish every grain of it and like always,I wondered how they manage to flavor each grain of rice,so well!

I went to bed having a fried rice on my mind. I even told him that we would be having fried rice with some chicken tomorrow. He was happy to hear that bit of good news before dozing off and I was happy that I have decided on something to cook for tomorrow!
Now that fried rice was fixed,what about the chicken? I scanned through my navy blue diary for recipes and other handwritten notebooks I have. Nothing felt worth trying at that point. So,during my daily conversation with Amma,I told her I was planning on something like a Ginger Chicken. That's when she mentioned about the Ginger Chicken in Bhanu's book. Bhanu Ravindran's cookbook has been a life saver in my family for years now. My Mamma bought the first copy which became the most wanted cookbook in our family that she bought many more. Everybody in my family or my extended family who loves to cook has this book with them. When Mamma passed away, Mammai,Appan's sister handed over Mamma's copy to me telling me that it should be with me since I am the one who loves to cook. That copy is a treasure of mine.


1 pound / 454 grams boneless skinless chicken breast / thighs cut into 2 inch cubes
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon lime juice
a pinch of red food colour

50 grams ginger
4 cloves garlic
150 grams onion

3-4 tablespoons tomato ketchup (or as you like)
1 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 tablespoon white vinegar
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
a pinch of red food colour


Method: In a small bowl, marinate the chicken pieces with soy sauce, salt and lime juice for 2 hours,covered in the refrigerator.Grind together ginger,garlic and onion to a smooth paste.

Heat about 1/2 cup of oil in a large saute pan and fry the chicken pieces until they are cooked and turn brown here and there.Drain them from oil and set aside.Into the same oil(add more if needed),add the ground paste and saute for 8-10 minutes or until the raw smell vanishes. If there were any pieces of chicken bits stuck to the pan, mix it along with the paste as it adds a whole new level of flavour.
Add the remaining ingredients to it and mix well.Add the fried chicken pieces,1/2 cup of water and simmer till the gravy thickens up and coats the pieces. Garnish with finely chopped cilantro and serve with rice or noodles of your choice!

This is the best ginger chicken I have ever tasted! All the ginger chicken I've tasted so far in my life hardly has a flavour of ginger but a big touch of cornstarch in the sauce and that turns into a semi-solid jiggly mass when cooled.I hate to eat such kind of food.
The ground paste in this recipe proves to be the best base and the sauce clings to the chicken pieces so well. You should try this if you like Ginger Chicken or atleast just to see what's it all about.

I am usually done with cooking by the time Jobin is back from work for two reasons. 1) I want to the kitchen and the house in general to look neat when he walks in because I hate to walk into a dirty, messy house and kitchen. 2) We get to spend more time together and I won't be standing by the stove stirring and trying to do dishes at the same time.
All 3 of us enjoyed our dinner last night and I was very very pleased when Ian voluntarily brought me back my linens,plates etc., after I finished photographing this dish. I usually occupy his play area for it and maybe he wanted to get my stuff out of his area :-)


Finla said...

I was thinking also what is thai about this chicken :-) so few ingridients but so delicious looking. Share the special fried rice recipe too. I mush chek out this cook book you mentioned.

Preetha said...

Hi Ria
even i am from Kannur and same as u said i don't like the usual cornsatch chinese flavour that is usually served as ginger chicken, before the boom of chinese in Kerala, we used to get a different ginger chicken. I hope this is somewhat similar to that

drmeeraanvar said...

Hi Ria,
do you get cayenne in kerala..if so what is it called in malayalam...btw u dish looks awesome

Roshni said...

I just made this dish and it's super yummy !! I am really excited to have found this recipe. Thank you Ria !!

Anju said...

Ria chechi,
tried ur ginger chicken today. it was jus awesome..
thk u..

Ria Mathew said...

Preetha, I hope you enjoy it!
Roshni & Anju - Yay! I am so glad to hear that it was a success!

Meera,it's our red chili powder/ mulaku podi.

Preetha said...

Oh Ria,
made it yesterday night, was delicious...but as i didn't add much colour, colour was less and didn't have cayenne pepper so add more pepper..

Hobby Chef said...

Looks Great :)

screwpills said...

Hey there,
Could you please tell me where you got Mrs Banu Ravindran's book from... I had her books but lost them unfortunately.

De said...

Hi Ria. I'm a big fan of your recipes. I made this recipe a minimum of 10 times so far with a little adjustment. I halved the amount of ginger and onions on the third cook. It was awesome. Thanks for this one. It's my go to visitor dinner recipe and have shared it with everyone who ate it.

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