So if you remember from my Jamaican Curried Goat blog post I all but shouted to the world that I lovvvve anything curried but while goat is my all time favorite thing to eat, a close second is Jamaican Curried Chicken. Ask any J'can they will tell you that this dish is a staple in their household usually prepared at least once per week.
As a poor international college student living abroad, funds were low and I had to get creative with my food. I often had tin mackerel, tin tuna and would create a delicious stew with it. I often bought chicken as it was also inexpensive and I could cook chicken 100 ways. However 80% of the time I resorted to Jamaican Curried Chicken. I wanted curried goat but those days I looked, smile and kept walking because I could not afford it.
The irony is that some of my flat mates thought my meals were so elaborate. It really wasn’t I just learned early how to make much out of very little.Just give me anything, and I can throw a meal together that will make your mouth water. It goes back to my mom’s use of contrivance in putting together a meal with what was available. On the other hand I could not understand how they survived on bake beans on toast and a glass of wine! The culture was different and I was coming from a country where I was use to eating heavier food for dinner. And the times when all I had was flour, I literally baked a bread, retreated to my room and ate it with butter.
On the days when I made my jamaican curried chicken, the hallway leading to kitchen was permeated with curry smells. I recently had someone contact me on FB when I posted my oxtail blog. We were in college the same time but ran in different circles. We are going back 24 years. She said I remember how good your food was in college. All smiles, great memory, really warmed my heart.
So over the years I played around with my curry chicken recipe and believe it or not there is a quick way and a slower way to cook jamaican curry chicken. But I choose my method based on the occasion and the amount of chicken I am cooking. My advice is to master the basics and then you can cut corners. Of the two methods; the slower is better if you are cooking a large amount of chicken.
If you read my curried goat blog, the method for the chicken is identical to the goat except that I do not add any water to my curried chicken. If the sauce is too thick at the end I will tip and I literally mean tip a little bit of water to loosen the sauce.
When I first moved to GA, my roommate Georgyka tried to ban me from cooking curry chicken in the house. I can still hear her voice in my head; “Lord Christ, I am all curried out.” Sometimes I was all curried out too but only for a day or two and then I would crave it again.
My taste buds have changed, are changing and I don’t want jamaican curry chicken every day. However it is still my number two favorite thing to eat.
Let me teach you how to do this recipe first and in a later post I will give you some delicious variations of curried chicken using coconut milk or mango chutney. These condiments give the curry an added dimension. One day you’ll let me know which your favorite is!
On this occasion I made a Broccoli Slaw Rice to eat with the Jamaican curried chicken. I will post the recipe at a later date for this delicious rice. Anyway curry chicken and white rice is the popular way to eat it in Jamaica. Whatever you like to pair Jamaican Curried Chicken with… Enjoy!
Tips for a successful Jamaican Curried Chicken:
A whole chicken is better because the bones from the chicken really helps to flavor the dish. However due to convenience and budget I mostly use dark meat leg and thigh.
Get your butcher or meat department to cut your chicken up for you
Remove skin and excess fat from chicken
Use a heavy base sauce pan as this will help your chicken to spring a lot of juice which is needed to stew the chicken. I do not add water to the cooking process. This dilutes the flavor and boils the chicken