Kitchen by TILAH

Chicken in Spiced Soy Sauce (Ayam Masak Kicap Berempah)

Hello Cooks!  It's a rainy morning.  I am sleepy and tired as my second one, Suhaym kept waking up yesterday night.  I would be more chatty if I am not a zombie today.  All I can say is let the pics tempt you cos this recipe is a must try.


10-15 pieces of chicken parts - cleaned and marinated with two tablespoons of turmeric powder and salt to taste, fried till cooked and set aside (you can also substitute this with about 1-2 kg of beef pieces - braised till soft and tender)
1 large onion finely sliced (if you noticed from the pics below, nope, this was not omitted but I had forgotten)
1 stick lemon grass - cut into two and crushed
4 cardamoms
4 cloves
1 stick cinnamon - about 3 to 4 cm
2 star anises (optional if you are substituting the chicken with beef)
3/4 teacup sweet soya sauce (I used Habhal's brand)
2 tablespoons meat curry powder (I used House brand)
2 tomatoes - cut into fours (you can also use plum or roma tomatoes, I find them sweeter)
3-4 green chillies - slit in halves and cut into twos
1 teaspoon Ajinamoto (if you prefer)
salt to taste
1-2 small bowls of water - depending on the size of your bowl (if you are using beef, use the stock from the braising of the beef)

(**items to be blended in a food processor with a little bit of water into a paste)
2 large onions** (sometimes, depending on my mood ;p I use 1 large onion and 5 shallots)
6 garlics**
3 cm ginger** (again I forgot to add this in - as in the picture below, I just crushed my ginger)
6-8 stalks of fresh red chillies** - depending on how hot you want to get ;p


1.  Using back the oil you used to fry the chicken, drain off excess and heat up remaining oil as needed in pan.  Add in the crushed lemon grass and saute for a few seconds.

2.  Add in the cinnamon, cloves, cardamoms and star anises.  I also add in the crushed ginger (which I had forgotten to blend in the food processor together with the rest of the blended ingredients).  This would also be the time to add in the finely sliced onions ( I had totally forgotten until I had finished cooking).  Saute until the sliced onions are withered.

3.  Add in the blended ingredients.  Saute for about a minute or so.

4.  Add in the meat curry powder.  Saute until oil separates.

5.  Once you see oil collecting on the surface of your sauteing mix, oil has separated.

6.  Add in the soy sauce.  Add in water (or braised beef stock).  Add in salt to taste and Ajinamoto, if you prefer.

7.  Let simmer and bring to boil.

8.  Add in the green chillies.  Give a stir and let simmer for about a minute.

9.  Add in the fried chicken pieces (or the braised beef pieces).  Fold into the gravy and let simmer for about three to five minutes.

10.  Add in the tomatoes.  Fold them in.

11.  Do a taste check and add whatever needed to your taste.  Let simmer for another minute or two.

12.  Off fire and serve.

Best with white rice.  Enjoy!  Happy Kitchen-ing!!


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