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Crystelle Pereira was raised in London by Kenyan-born Portuguese-Goan parents and has visited numerous countries, including Mexico, Japan and South Korea. Her upcoming book, Flavor Kitchen, is full of recipes inspired by her upbringing and travels. Here, she shares her easy and delish Goan chicken chili fry from the book. (Goa is a state in western India.)
"The zingy, fresh flavors of this chicken chili fry are true to my Portuguese-Goan heritage, and it's also a family staple because it is such a simple dish to whip up with just a handful of ingredients. It's the perfect way to use up leftover roast chicken and you can either serve it on its own or in a wrap with some sweet chili sauce. And, you can absolutely choose whatever protein you like here—tofu works well, but also shrimp and beef. The world is your oyster," says Crystelle.
Pro Tips from Crystelle: You can also start with uncooked boneless, skinless chicken thighs sliced into thin strips. Fry these in the hot pan (after removing the onions and potatoes) for 10 to 15 minutes, seasoning with salt and pepper and a sprinkle of turmeric. When cooked, return the veggies to the pan and continue with the remaining steps. To make this vegan, simply swap the chicken for tofu, which I have done before and it tastes sublime! Just fry the tofu using the same method as for the uncooked chicken, but for one to two minutes on each side.
Place the potato slices in a large pot of cold salted water, cover the pan, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cook for 10 minutes (they should still be firm and hold their shape), then drain and set aside.
Melt 2 tablespoons of the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion slices with a pinch of salt and fry for 30 to 45 minutes, or until nicely browned. Please be patient with your onions, as browning them properly is key to adding so much flavor to your dish.
Using a slotted spoon, remove the onions and add 1 tablespoon coconut oil to the pan. Turn the heat up to high and add the potatoes, tossing them in the oil to crisp up. Sprinkle over the turmeric and stir for about 7 minutes, until the potatoes take on a yellow hue and are crisp and golden around the edges.
Add the sliced chiles and shredded chicken to the pan with the potatoes and season well with salt and pepper. Stir to combine, frying for a couple of minutes.
Pour in the vinegar and return the onions to the pan, then stir for a minute to cook off the vinegar slightly.
Sprinkle over the cilantro and stir once more to combine before serving.
Excerpted from Flavor Kitchen by Crystelle Pereira. Copyright © 2023 by Crystelle Pereira. Used with permission by Kyle Books. All rights reserved.