Wednesday, September 18, 2013

spicy chicken with pan-roasted shredded coconut

This morning I put JL in the stroller, and walked to the market. I needed eggs. HUGE eggs to make some chiffon cakes. They are my current obsession.

At the market, I stopped by the fish ball stall to get some, well, fish balls. Aden is mad about fish balls. Then I had a chat with the couple who run the stall opposite the fish ball stall.

And that was when I saw the coconut shredding machine.

I have not seen one of these since I was 12!!

So I bought a coconut.

Just so I could see it being shredded.

Yes, I know.

Just a bit childish.

While, once in a while we are all allowed to be kids again. Yes? :)

Well, my impulse buy turned out to be a really great idea because I ended up making this really yummy dish!

I started by squeezing out as much moisture from the coconut and then toasting it in a skillet (no oil) over medium heat.

It will take a while for the coconut to brown. Just keep stirring so nothing burns.

Be patient.

Very patient.

And don't walk away.

When the coconut had turned brown, I turned off the heat, transferred the coconut into a bowl (so the cooking stopped) and set the bowl aside.

The ingredients needed to make the rempah (spice paste) are shallots, garlic, galangal, lemongrass, dried chilli and buah keras (candlenuts). Everything was placed in a blender with some water and blitzed.

If you are worried about the dish being too spicy, remove the seeds in the chilli before soaking them. Because I was making this for a bunch of adults (and because I was feeling really lazy as well), I simply blitzed everything - seeds and all.

In a heated wok, I added some vegetable oil. Into the oil went the rempah. This was fried for about 3-4 minutes, until I could smell the fragrance of the spices. And chilli. :P

Then the chicken pieces were added and stir-fried for another 3-4 minutes before the water was added.

I turned the heat down to medium, placed a lid on the wok, and let the chicken simmer for about 10 minutes, or until all the chicken pieces were cooked through. (Remember to stir once in a while!)

Once that happened, I removed the lid, and continued cooking for about 3-4 minutes until most of the liquid had evaporated.

The shredded coconut was added to the chicken, and stirred to mix.


See the rewards of paying $1.50 to see a coconut get shredded?


Spicy Chicken with Pan-roasted Shredded Coconut (Serves 4-6)
Adapted from "Kampung Curry" by Patsie Cheong

1 whole chicken, cut into smaller pieces
1 coconut, shredded, excess liquid squeezed out
4 tbs vegetable oil
1/2 - 2/3 cups water
1 tsp salt, or to taste
2 tsp sugar, or to taste

Spice Paste:
100g shallots
50g garlic
3 buah keras (candlenut), or substitute with macadamia nuts
2 slices galangal
40g dried chilli
3 stalks lemongrass
some water

1. Slowly roast shredded coconut in a skillet over medium heat, stirring very often, until brown. Transfer to bowl and set aside.
2. Blitz ingredients for spice paste in a blender until relatively smooth. You can also pound them using a pestle and mortar.
3. Heat wok, add oil. Once hot, add spice paste and fry until fragrant (3-4 minutes).
4. Add chicken, and stir-fry for another 3-4 minutes.
5. Add water, turn heat to medium, and simmer, covered for 10 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Stir occasionally.
6. Remove lid, cook for another 3-4 minutes, until most of the liquid has evaporated.
7. Add coconut and stir to mix.
8. Serve hot, with rice.

I am submitting this recipe for Cook-Your-Books hosted by Kitchen Flavours.

And linking up with


  1. Wow, this looks delicious! So perfect with rice!
    I could eat two plates of rice!
    Thank you for linking to CYB!

  2. Mmm yummy!! I've never seen a coconut get shredded before actually haha.. I'd have acted the same way you did ;p

    Ai @ Sakura Haruka
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