kottu roti

Kottu Roti – All times favourite street food in Sri Lanka

kottu roti
kottu roti

With a typical metal clashing and banging to the rhythem of deafening fast beat music, making kottu is a roadside spectale at night in Sri Lanka!

Kottu, literally means cut rotis, originated from the Southern part of India and found its way to Sri Lanka with a delicious interlude.  Rather than using a knife to chop rotis into bite-sized pieces, the expert, street-food vendors use two thin metal plates to rhythmically chop them, while giving a little jig.

When the last of daylight dims down, bright white lights dazzle from the foodstalls, while a circle of onlookers watching in amasement how their portions of Kottu are made in minutes, followed by a  a rock and roll dance, cling clang of metals, many ingredients being dropped and then dissappered in shreds!  Finally, a heap of steaming kottu on a plate is offered and while you are digging a fork between a combination of soft flakes of roti, glistering pieces of meat and shreds of veggies,  involuntarily, your legs will dance to the irresistable music aired to the wee hours of night.

We can produce something similar at home even though we don’t have the metal plates or the need of a jig.  The packeted frozen Kottu Porottas, available in the freezer section of  Asian food stalls, are the best and easiest choice.  If you are unable to get that and you have time and patience, these rotis could be made at home and cut them into small squres to make this dish.  Interstingly, these rotis are called Hankerchief rotis, considering their thin and flat appearance.  However, they are locally known as Godamba roti.

Recipes given below for ;




  • Kottu roti
  • Handerchief roti
  • Chicken curry

Let’s make kottu

Prepare the frozen porotta 

  • Heat up a non-stick pan
  • Place a  frozen porotta and heat up both sides
  • Cut into small pieces
  • Make 3 cups for this recipe

Let’s get ready with these ingredients to make the Kottu dish;

Kottu Porotta 3 cups
Soy sauce  3 tbsp
Salt  1/2 tsp
Ground black pepper  1 tsp
Garlic chopped
Green chili slit  1
Onion chopped 1
Large onion cubed  for tossing on at the end
Carrots – cut or shred into thin strips(Do not grate)  1/2 cup
Spring onions chopped or leek cut thinly 1/4 cup
White Cabbage – shreded thinly  1 cup
Eggs  2 large

Veggie Mix

Stir fry :




  • In a large wok, add 2 tbsp of oil and heat up
  • Add garlic and saute’ the chopped onion
  • Add shreded carrots, shreded cabbage, slit green chilli and start stir fry until slightly wilted
  • Add salt and ground black pepper

Egg it :

  • Now push the veggies to a side of the wok and break all 2 eggs into the pan.

  • Immediately scramble the eggs

Mix it :

  • Now mix veggies and eggs together and give a good stir frying under high flame
  • Toss a bit more black pepper powder and add soy sauce.  Mix rapidly
  • Add the cut pieces of Kottu Porotta and give a good toss and a shake to mix everything together
  • Add some of the pieces of meat leaving the gravy and mix well
  • Throw the cubed onion on top.  Onions should be crunchy to bite.  So do not cover the lid or over cook at this point

  • Your basic Kottu dish is done!

Time to gobble it down :

  • Now drench kottu in chicken gravy and tuck in (Mix gravy only when you are ready to eat it or else your kottu will be too soggy )
  • Delicious !

Hankerchief roti / Godamba roti

Flat rotis used for making Kottu




You will need :

 All purpose flour  3 cups
 Salt  1 tsp
 Olive oil (Any cooking oil would do)  1 tbsp
 Sugar  1 tsp
Baking powder  1/2 tsp

Knead it :

  • Rub flour, sugar, salt and oil together
  • Add water little by little knead for about 5 – 8 mins until the dough doesnt stick on to your fingers
  • Divide into equal sized balls giving an extra kneed to each ball
  • Rub oil on each ball generously.  Place on a tray a little apart from each other
  • Cover with a wet tea towel or a cling film and let them rest at least 3 hours

Groti

Bake it :

  • Heat up a wide flat pan and spray oil all over
  • Grease the work top as well as your fingers with little oil
  • Place a dough ball on top and press it down from the middle and slowly spread it out from sides to look like a flat hankerchief or a bed sheet
  • Lift up slowly and place on the heated pan
  • Immediately after a few seconds, flip on to the other side
  • Bake both sides quickly, being careful no to make them crispy
  • Cover with a lid or a tea towel until all the rotis are made
  • Cut into bite size pieces and keep aside

chicken curry that goes with Kottu 

Marinate it :

Marinate 300g of chicken legs or thighs cut into medium size pieces with the following and keep aside for 1hr in the fridge:

  • Salt 1/4 tsp
  • Chili powder 1/4 tsp
  • Roasted curry powder  1/4 tsp (Could use garam masala in place of this)
  • Black pepper powder 1/8 tsp
  • Turmeric 1/8 tsp
  • Ginger and garlic grated or paste
  • Olive oil 1 tsp
  • Vinegar

Stir fry it:

  • Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pan
  • Add 3 cloves, an inch long cinnamon stick, a few crushed cardamoms.  fry a minute
  • Brown a thinly sliced onion
  • Add 1 tbsp of ginger and garlic paste or both ground together as a pulp and a few crushed curry leaves
  • Add a slit green chili
  • Drop the marinated chicken into the pan and fry for about 5 minutes under medium flame
  • Now close the lid, lower the flame to the minimum and  let the chicken cook in its own juices for 10 mins
  • Open the lid, mix all the juices and the chicken together and fry for another 2 mins

Cook it :

  • Add water a little above the chicken pieces, cover the lid and cook for 15 mins
  • Give a good stir and add more water as you need a lot of gravy for Kottu
  • Cover and cook further a few mins
  • Finally, add a tablespoon of Maggi coconut milk powder to enhance the flavours
  • Drop a few crushed curry leaves on top, cover and let it rest
  • Your juicy chicken curry is  now ready!

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creamy chicken

Creamy Chicken – A creamy, silky chicken for a special occassion

creamy chicken2

This is a recipe of creamy chicken with a silky texture to give a glorious touch to any occasion – especially to make your guests feel extra special!

This is an Indian-style dish, which is mild in spices but topped with flavours and aroma.  To make this, the cooking technique matters more than anything else and if you get it right, then you are in for a real treat.

It goes with rice, any form of bread or noodles; kids will love the silkiness of this dish that will linger in their palates for hours – with an insatiable urge to ask for more.

Get the ingredients ready :




Chicken cut into medium size pieces 300 g
Onions 1
Ginger and garlic freshly grated 1 tbsp
Tomatoes – ripped and juicy 1
Chili powder, Coriander powder, Cumin powder, Garam masala 1 tsp each
Salt 1/4 tsp or to taste
Turmeric and Orange biryani colour(powder) 2 pinches each
Green chili – Slit 2
Single cream 1/2 cup
Whole spices: Black cardamom, cloves, Cinnamon, Pepper corns, Star anise 3 each
Kasthuri Methi (dry) – available in Indian grocessary shops 1 tbsp



Let’s make it:

  • Heat up 2tbsp of olive oil in a wide pan/wok.
  • Add all whole spices; black cardamom, cloves cinnamon, pepper corns, star anise.  Fry.
  • Add chopped onions and nicely brown them.
  • Add grated ginger and garlic and  green chili . Fry.
  • Add Chili powder, Coriander powder, Cumin powder,  turmeric and salt.  Fry.
  • Add the chicken pieces and give a good stir under high flame bringing all together.
  • Close the lid. Cook for 5 mins.
  • Open the lid and add chopped tomatoes.  Stir fry for 2 mins.
  • Pour a glass of warm water.
  • Cover and cook until the chicken is fully cooked for 5-8 mins.
  • Mix single cream with the Orange Biriyani colour and pour over the chicken.
  • Rub Kasthuri Methi in your palms and drop on to the pot

chicken creamy2

  • Cook under slow flame until bubbles start bobbing up on the cream.



  • Give a stir, close the flame immediately and sprinkle garam masala on top and garnish with chopped coriander leaves.
  • Your gorgeous, silky chicken is ready to serve!!!

Chicken creamy

 

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hard chicken

Hard Chicken Curry – Unforgetably delicious chicken curry

(Fowl /Free range chicken /Curry chicken /Gam Kukulu mas /Desi chicken)

Hard chicken is actually fowl or free range old chicken, available only at ethnic butches.  It is more chewy and hard as the bird lives longer  than its’ peers’, after they stop laying eggs.  So, the meat has hardly any fat in it, making it a healthier version of chicken for those who tend to avoid poultry for the same matter.

You need to cook it low and slow to get the right texture, which only comes from following the techniques as well as the ingredients that go into it.  For instance, vinegar and potatoes help in a great deal in softening the meat.  I must insist that cooking in the pressure cooker will soften the chicken rapidely but destroy its natural flavours.

As the bird doesn’t have much fat,  you need to add an extra table spoon of olive oil or any other cooking oil in the pot.  Once cooked, adding just a tbsp of coconut milk will give it a surprising levels of flavours.

If you taste it once, you will always remember its extraordinary delicious taste.  Try this dish with hot rice, rotis, noodles, pasta or bread or with boiled casava mixed with fresh coconut flakes which will complement the dish in a great deal.

What you need to make this dish:









Let's make it:

Step 1 : Marinate the chicken pieces

    • Marinate the chicken pieces with vinegar, salt,  turmeric, chili powder, roasted curry powder, ginger and garlic paste and crushed curry leaves.
    • Cover and keep aside for at least 1 hr. (preferably overnight in the fridge for the chicken pieces to absorb the essense of spices and soften with vinegar)

Sri Lankan roasted curry powder from Amazon;

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Aachi-Masala-Powder-Lankan-Traditional/dp/B07LDR9ZHT/ref=asc_df_B07LDR9ZHT/?tag=googshopuk-21&linkCode=df0&hvadid=310666435903&hvpos=1o6&hvnetw=g&hvrand=10223882576071339976&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9045936&hvtargid=pla-633715674942&psc=1&th=1&psc=1

Recipe for homemade roasted curry powder;

https://happyrecipes.co.uk/roasted-curry-powder/

cuyyr powder

Step 2: Roast the chicken in the pan

    • Heat up 2 tbsp of any oil in a wide pan
    • Add the whole spices; cloves, cinnamon, cardamom and a few curry leaves crusched
    • Add the sliced onion and let it brown
    • Add some freshly grated or crushed garlic and ginger
    • Now drop the marinated chicken pieces
    • Stir fry the chicken pieces for nearly 10-15 mins in medium flame allowing the excess water to evaporate
    • Close the lid and lower the flame to the minimum.  Splash a little water if the pan is too dry. Let it sit like this for 5 mins. This will let all the juices to ooze out
      • Open the lid again stir fry for a 5 more mins gathering juices with chicken pieces until they are well coated

 

  • Pour water a well above chicken pieces as it has to cook for about 45 mins

  • Close and cook for 45 mins while topping hot water if the water level goes down but the chicken pieces are still hard.  Cook until chicken pieces are tender enough to bite

Step 3 : Add potatoes




  • Open, give a good stir, check salt and drop the potatoes and slit green chili. If the water level has gone too low, add a little more hot water to bring it just above chicken

    • Close and cook for another 1/2 hr under medium flame

 

  • Finally, add 2 tbsps of fresh or maggi instant coconut milk, a handful of curry leaves and cook for another 10 mins under very low flame.  This final therapy will give the curry it's tempting colour and make it more flavourful
  • Let it rest for 20 mins (cook this curry night before and it will taste heavenly on the next day)
  • Ready to serve with hot rice, rotis, noodles or with boiled casava(maniyok) mixed with fresh coconut
  • Delicious in every bite!

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