I'd hoped that today we'd be making this delicious curried-rice dish to celebrate their progression to the final, but it wasn't to be! Instead, let's take comfort in its fulfilling, satisfying, tasty, spicy yumminess.
Kerrieschotel roughly translates as "curried things' and I believe it's originally intended to be a meal made from leftovers, things you'd already have in the house. It has a nostalgic 'World War rations" feel about it that is kind of rustic and romantic, but as my belly rarely allows there to be any leftovers, I've adjusted the recipe to a more "premium" from scratch, one-pot one. Therefore, this recipe isn't quite authentic. In fact the whole thing is pretty much a tidy tweak. All will be explained in that section, but for now, get your sleeves rolled up, and get stuck in!
100g diced chicken
200g basmati rice
750ml chicken stock
2 tbsp hot curry powder
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp hot chilli powder
1/4 tsp turmeric
2 tbsp coconut oil
crushed cornflakes, to top
This is enough to comfortably satisfy two hungry appetites without an accompaniment, and will easily stretch to four.
1. On the hob, heat half the coconut oil in a suitable oven-proof dish, and fry the chicken in it. Coconut oil is solid at room temperature (and looks a bit alarmingly like lard) but is currently enjoying fame for it's great health benefits. Despite being very high in saturated fat, the particular fats and acids in it are recognised as healthy ones, and it actually promotes weight-loss.
2. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 180ºc (160ºc for fan).
3. When the chicken is cooked right through, but still moist, remove it from the dish and set it aside.
4. Add the remaining oil to the dish, bring it to heat, and sauté the onions along with the spices, for a few minutes, until the onions are soft. This will smell AMAZING! Don't let the onions or spices burn, though.
5. Add the rice, stirring well so that each grain is coated in the oil, and fry for a few minutes. Again, don't let it burn.
6. Add the chicken back into the dish, along with the chicken stock. Bring it to the boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer, stirring occasionally, until the rice is very nearly cooked. You want it to be almost there, but with a little more bite left than normal. Most of the stock should've been absorbed, but there should still be some liquid visible in the dish.
7. Remove from the heat, and top evenly with the crushed cornflakes.
8. Pop it in the oven for 15-20 minutes, and there we have it!
Due to the cost of coconut oil, this recipe looks a lot more expensive than it needs to be! Today's Tidy Tweaks will cover ways to make this cheaper, because as I said originally, this was intended to be an inexpensive left-overs meal, and it can still certainly be made that way!
In the meantime, this is how things stand for the recipe as I've described it!
Asda should've progressed to the final with an offering of around £12.50 but have been disqualified and sent home in disgrace as they don't sell coconut oil. If they sold it at the same price as sainsbury's they'd not have won, but would still comfortably have beaten them! Either way, it's all academic... they're out!
Instead, Morrisons won with a tidy offering of £12.71. Tesco couldn't really get into the match with their attempt at £13.45 but they were still streets ahead of Sainsbury's who didn't even test the keeper with their ridiculous £17.20. To be fair, the gap was so huge due to the fact that they only sell the very expensive organic virgin coconut oil at £6. Tesco also have a version at this price, but have a cheaper one too. Sainsburys were most expensive for almost every ingredient.
So here's the confession: when I found recipes for Kerrischotel on the internet, I really really liked the idea of it.... but when I made it myself, I wasn't impressed. It was too bland and stodgy, so I tweaked it until I came up with the version that I've presented today (and that I really enjoyed last night!)
The first tweaks, then, should explain the original recipe. In the versions I found, 500g of cooked rice were used instead of cooking dried rice in the dish itself. It was added with 500ml of Chicken stock and left-over chicken. The onions were sautéed in 45g of butter, rather than the coconut oil, and the only spices in the dish were 2tsp of curry powder! I'm sure you can see how this would've been cheaper, but it was also disappointing and joyless!
To be fair, the butter would've been fine, but as I was tweaking it anyway I thought I'd make it healthier by using the coconut oil that I'd bought this week and was desperate to try!
In the recipes I found, some had cornflakes on top (as here) and some had breadcrumbs. I tried the corn flakes first, and can safely say that's the only part about the first recipe that I preferred. The breadcrumbs were OK, but didn't have the same crunch. It does mean I have to confess that the picture you see above is of the version I didn't enjoy! The only difference in the appearance between that and this recipe, however, is that this one is slightly darker due to the additional spices.
Cooking the rice in the dish, after coating in the coconut oil, helped keep the grains of rice individual, and overall less stodgy. It also meant I could use just the one pot!
One recipe advised to add a knob of butter on top, at the oven stage. I'm not sure this added anything, so will leave it out myself next time.
You could try introducing vegetables to the recipe to bulk it up a bit (although it really doesn't need bulking!). Similarly, you could eliminate meat altogether if you wanted to make a vegetarian or even vegan version. Really, any left-overs whatsoever could be chucked in here, and I believe that is largely the point.... I've got myself wondering about chorizo now, as I so often do...
I also thought, when looking at the bread-crumbed version, that a parmesan crust could be an interesting taste combination with the spices... but I'm not certain that I'm brave enough to try that one just yet!
So there we have it, munchkins... I'd encourage you to be bold with this one and try new things, as long as you let me know how they turn out!