Sunday, August 31, 2008

1001 Simple Chicken Curries

This cookbook lists 1000 Chicken curries, greatly simplified, so that a first time cook can easily cook them. The principle is simple – 10 different cuts of chicken are combined with ten different bases and 10 different flavouring techniques to create a thousand different recipes. The cuts of chicken are listed below.

Breast:
The breast of the chicken is almost totally white meat and is usually available as a boneless sheet.

Chicken Mince
This is ground up chicken meat  (Kheema).

Salami / Sausages:
Chicken mince is precooked, mixed with mild spices and is shaped into cylinders. Though not commonly used in Indian cuisine, they can be used for some of the easiest chicken dishes as they require little or no cooking.

Liver
Liver needs to be cooked for a minimum of five minutes on a medium flame to kill harmful bacteria. Soaking it in milk prior to cooking makes it less ‘smelly’

Tenderloin is muscle of the breast, consisting completely of white meat.

Mince balls :
Chicken mince is shaped into small balls and is usually fried or boiled

Lollipops come from the middle of the chicken wing and are usually deep fried.

Leg
The leg of the chicken is made up of the thigh and the drumstick. Both are almost totally dark meat and are cooked the same way. This is the thickest cut of chicken and so needs some marination to make them soft..

Chopped Chicken:
The whole chicken is chopped up into bite sized pieces. This is the cut most used in Indian curries.

For explanation of bases and flavouring techniques, refer 100 chicken recipes.

A note on the dark meat and white meat :
Red meat or Dark meat comes from heavy-use muscles. These are muscles built for endurance and are powered by myoglobin, (the red protein which stores oxygen). The more Myoglobin the muscles have, the redder or darker the meat.

White meat comes from less-used muscles built for quick bursts of energy - these do not contain myoglobin and appear white.

In a chicken the breast muscles are hardly used for flight. So they are white. Flying birds like ducks and geese, have red meat in their breasts. In contrast, the leg of a chicken is completely made of red meat

Fish is mostly white meat, a cow is mostly dark meat and chicken has a mix of both.

Red meat takes longer to cook, but is more flavourful than white meat.

1 comment:

Miakoda said...

Wow, I'm really surprised. A vegetarian who knows how to cook chicken? :)

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Cooking is fun - Duplication is a pain !

"It is extraordinary to me that the idea of creating thousands of recipes by mixing building blocks takes immediately to people or it doesn’t take at all. .... If it doesn’t grab a person right away, ... you can talk to him for years and show him demos, and it doesn’t make any difference. They just don’t seem able to grasp the concept, simple as it is". ( Thanks Warren Buffett !)

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