Saturday, 16 January 2010

Chicken Wing Curry

I used to be a confirmed chicken-breast-aholic. I considered the breast to be the finest of the meat and everything else to be a fiddle. It's a long time since my revelation that slow cooked thighs are far, far tastier and in fact these days when I buy a whole chicken and divide it up myself it's usually the breast that ends up leaving me thinking, "Well what should I do to use that up?"

But wings are a step too far, with very little meat and lots of fiddly bones. At least that's what I thought until a couple of days ago when the shop was out of virtually every kind of organic chicken and all I could get was a pack of four wings for £1.50. I could a vaguely sri-lankan style curry with them over about two hours and the results we delicious. Yes, I had to spend a couple of minutes fishing the little bones out before serving but there was the end a surprising amount of meat and lovely rich depth that you get from cooking meat with the bones.

Chicken Wing Curry - Serves 2-4 (with rice and a dahl)
1 red onion
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp nigella seeds
1/2 tbsp fish sauce (nam pla)
300ml coconut milk
1/2 tbsp sri lankan dark curry powder
1 kaffir lime leaf, shredded
4 chicken wings
oil for frying onions

Chop and fry a red onion in oil.
Add the nam pla, mustard and nigella seeds and cook for a few minutes.
Stir in the chicken wings and cook until sealed and slightly brown on each side.
Add the curry powder, coconut milk and kaffir lime.
Simmer, stirring occasionally for two hours or so.
Pick over the sauce, lifting out the bones from the wings and shredding the chicken.

The final result was surprisingly meaty and had a dark colour and depth of flavour. We served it with a similar quantity of dahl and a good helping of rice and it fed us for a somewhat greedy lunch for two, followed by two more restrained lunches the next day.

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