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Caril de Galhina…. Chicken,Coconut, Coconut and more Coconut


The following dish as the title suggests is heavily based around coconut  it is a rich and creamy dish that will knock your taste buds for six. It is a traditional Goan curry although on my many trips there I have never seen it on any restaraunt  menu, perhaps I’m not looking in the right places. It is of course as the title suggests heavily influenced by the Portuguese but don’t let that fool you this is a top drawer curry that fully deserves its place in the hall of fame, and it is without doubt one of my very favourite curries!

Caril de Galhina is quite heavy on the chillies but for those of you out there who prefer things a little milder just cut the chilli quantity in half it won’t ruin the dish if that’s the way you like it!

The secret to the dish is the Paste, I used a pestle and mortar for the rough paste and a processor for the smooth paste and as the photo shows mixed it back into the pestle;so take some time to get this right and everything else will follow,

Once you are ready to stand in front of the stove everything else is pretty simple, with no more than hal a dozen ingredients to throw into the pan how tricky is that?

Well you tell me, I love it I hope you do too….

Caril de Galhina

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Serves 6 to 8

Prep time 45 mins

Cooking time 30 mins


1kg/2.2 lbs Chicken skinned and cut into pieces

2 Tbsp Vegetable oil

1 medium Onion slices

250ml coconut milk

1 Tbsp Tamarind extract

125ml/4.5 fl oz coconut cream


For the spice paste

1 coconut grated or

8 tbsp desiccated coconut soaked in a little water for an hour

1 tbsp uncooked rice rinsed and drained

8 cloves Garlic crushedThe finished Paste

2.5cm/ 1 inch fresh peeled Ginger

The finished Paste

10 dried red Kashmiri chillies

4 Green Chillies de-seeded and slit lengthways

.5 tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp coriander seeds

1 tablespoon Poppy seeds

1 tbsp ground turmeric.

Put the chicken pieces into a bowl and sprinkle with salt

To make the spice paste , put half the grated or desiccated coconut , and the rice into a food processor or blender and process adding a little water to make a coarse paste .(Yes you can use a Pestle & Morter here i did without problems)

Pour the remaining coconut in the food processor with the garlic , ginger , dried red chillies , green chillies and the ground spices and blitz until ground, then mix into the coarse paste….

Heat the oil in a heavy based pan over a medium heat and add the onion, cook for four or five minutes or until light golden brown; add the spice paste and stir fry stirring constantly  for a couple of minutes or until the oil separates out. Caril de Galhina3

Add the chicken and stir to coat , then add the coconut milk  and season with a little salt to taste.

Reduce the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the chicken is almost done .

For the last few minutes of cooking add the tamarind paste and stir in the coconut cream, cook for a further five to ten minutes or until the chicken is thoroughly cooked. You may notice that with the addition of the coconut cream that the dish will produce some Coconut oil which will seperate from the main dish, if you don’t like this then just spoon it away before serving, for me its got loads of flavour so I leave it right where it is……

Serve and enjoy

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Pineapple and vegetable Curry


Traditional British fare, try my Indian twist

So OK you have this lovely piece of Gammon Ready to roast, or grill in the case of a steak, and up comes the usual question “What are we having this with then”…. Pineapple rings…yawn boring boring boring do me a favour!

Pineapple curry isn’t usually the answer that comes back!

It should be but it aint, and the reason for that is very simple… the average pub grub presents you with a nice piece of the tinned article whenever you select it from their menu or of course you could always try the fried egg

Cynicism aside, Pineapple is always a great compliment to bacon in all its forms. Getting your head round meat with fruits can always be a challenge however these two Pineapple and Bacon are very old bosom buddies, with this recipe promising to lift  your gammon steak or Bacon joint, up to a level you would not have thought possible.

You can use pretty much any mix of veg here that takes you fancy and theres a little advice at the end of the recipe on how best to include them!

My recipe here includes peas sweetcorn carrots and onions, all based round a coconut masala,  and as such are in my humble opinion a great mix, and very tasty indeed!

Let me know what you think!


The first thing you need here is a coconut masala

3 Tbsp Coconut fresh if you can get it or desiccated soaked to soften in a little water works too

6 Cloves

1 inch piece Cinnamon

The seeds of one Cardamom pod

7 Dried Red Chilli

1 inch cube fresh Ginger

.25 tsp Salt

Blend all of the above together, adding a little water until you have a very smooth paste, remember this takes  time as coconut fresh or desiccated is a tough veg that resist blending but persevere, you will get there in the end!

Step 2

Once achieved set aside for later use!

1 tsp peanut oil

1 tbsp Ghee or Veg oil

2 Cups fresh  Pineapple (tinned if you must)

1 Medium Onion

1 Large Clove Garlic Paste

2 tbsp Garden Peas

2 tbsp  Sweetcorn

1 Large Carrot Cubed 1/2 inch cubes

1 sprig fresh Curry leaves(8or 9 Dried will do)

.5 tsp Cumin

.5 tsp Mustard seeds

pinch  Asafoetida

.25 tsp Turmeric

1  flatTbsp grated Jaggery(or any unrefined brown sugar)


Heat the pan add the teaspoon of Peanut oil add the Curry leaves, Cumin, Mustard seeds, and Asafoetida, toast to fragrance. Add the ghee or vegetable oil and the Onions and Garlic and cook to translucent soft, add the Carrots and cook for a further 5 mins or so, then add the Coconut Masala paste that you have set aside. Cook until the paste begins to brown, then add between 1 to 2 cups of Water, Turmeric and Jaggery, finishing off with Salt to taste. Give the mixture a good stir bring to the boil then reduce the heat and cook on a low heat for about 15 mins, add the Peas, and Sweetcorn and cook for a further 10 mins on a low heat finally adding the Pineapple right at the end and allowing that to just heat through before serving!


This is a fantastic vegetarian dish too and you can add sweet potatoes, peppers, or any veg you like, bearing in mind that some vegetables take longer to cook than others and  as such par boilling potatoes before adding them, at the carrot stage may well prove a good idea, in keeping the cooking time down!

Where peppers are concerned slice finely and add them at the oniomn garlic stage!

That said serve it hot or warm with meat or without.

Good with duck and poultry and of course bacon…. I love this curry as it goes with so much!