Chicken Chanp (Juicy Spareribs in Thick Spicy Gravy)

4:34 AM

I am a very easy kind of a person and luckily have got a husband of the same sort. Both of us are happy with small things and little efforts. We hardly complain about anything. More or less put us in any situation, give us any food that’s edible and seasoned right, we are happy. We love to experiment with food and have a vast palette and variety is always welcome. Generally we prefer to have one dish meals for dinners on weekdays. Mixing rice with dals with subzis is little cumbersome when after a hard days work even moving a finger seems like a job. Rather we find it relaxing to have our meal from a bowl. That way rice based meals are quite filling. Make a quick fried rice, pulav or khichri and have it while watching the TV. Often I make a quick soy briyani and prefer to have it with raita (spiced yogurt) at the sides.

But my family is quite opposite, they cant even think of having Biryani with raita. They need a side dish, that too something elaborate. Give them Alu ka paratha (spicy potato stuffed flat bread) and raita and they will look at you quizzically, "what should I eat this with" would be their question. So on Maa’s birth day when I planned to make mutton biryani and chicken Chanp, Hubby was quite surprised. But that’s how things are here. The other guests also received this combo well.  And everyone simply could not get enough of this gravy. Big tender juicy chicken breast and leg pieces  with a creamy spicy coating gravy, flavoured with keora and rose water…what was not to love about this curry.

As I have already told in my last posts that this is a much loved dish for Bengalis. Talk about Biryani, chicken chanp and rezala and they will all go dreamy eyed. These dishes are like an epitome of Bengal’s culinary culture. One can travel from the farthest point of south Kolkata to North Kolkata just to have this dish for dinner. Ask any Kolkattan and he will brief you about the best place to have these dishes and if you ask more you will get an detailed analysis of why the chanp of one shop is better than the other. Blame it on our superlative tastebuds that can differentiate between garam masala having more cardamom or cinnamon or our nit picking nature that we can say whether ginger was first added to fried onion or the garlic paste.

Anyways the dish I cooked receieved a lot of praise. Everyone went all ga ga over it, especially the gravy. Even before leaving, a friend enquired if he could pack little bit of the chanp from leftover. Yes, it was that good. Try it for yourself to know the truth. Here is the very unique recipe.

Chicken Chanp

Big chunky breast and leg pieces of chicken: 7 pieces (In my case it weighed 1 kg. The point here is to take big pieces with bones and ribs)

Spice paste:
Onion: 2 medium
Ginger: 3” piece
Garlic: 6-8 fat cloves
Sattu: 11/3 tbsp (please see notes)
Curd: 3/4 cup
Dry red chillies: 2 pieces
Red chili powder: 1 tbsp
Water: ½ cup

Shajeera (caraway seeds)/ black cumin: ½ tsp
Garam masala powder: 2/3 tsp
Keora water: few drops
Rose water: few drops

Green cardamom: 3 pieces
Cloves: 8-9 pieces
Cinnamon: ½” piece
Bay leaf: 1 big

Oil:1/2 cup
Ghee: 1/3 cup

Wash the chicken pieces and slit each at 4 places. Keep aside.

Take all the ingredients under spice paste and make a fine paste. Adjust the salt. Mix in all the chicken pieces. Rub well and keep covered for at-least 2 hours.

At the end of this marination time heat the oil in a flat frying pan or Lagan. I used a flat lagan style handi.  Once the oil is hot add lightly crushed whole garam masala, wait till it splutter.

Now take the chicken pieces out of the marinade, remove as much marinade as possible and add to the oil. On very low flame keep on frying the pieces till they look pale (approx. 5 minutes).

Now add the marinade and little water. Mix well and let it cook on medium flame. The chicken will leave a lot of water and would be cooked in it. Keep on stirring from time to time.

After another 5 minutes add crushed shajeera, half of the garam masala and give it a good mix.

Once the chicken pieces are cooked and oil comes oozing out from the sides the dish is done.

Add keora water, rose water and garam masala. Keep covered.

Serve hot with any rice dish of your preference or lachha paratha to scoop and mop this delicious gravy.

A Homemaker's Note:
The dish should be cooked on low-medium heat. as much water is not added so there is a chance of it burning at the bottom.

The marination time is very important. try to marinade for a minimum of 2 hours.

Keora and Rose water have very over powering aroma, use it sparingly.

If you dont get sattu use dry roasted besan (chickpea flour) equal quantity.

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  1. Wow this looks so fab ....the gravy is just wow ...I forgot to mention in the last post ..loved your serving dish

  2. Aar eibhabe baniyo na aar photo upload koro na. Dekhei jibe jol eshe gache aar aamar dieting shob bhoger khatai chole jabe! Phataphati Chicken Chaap hoyeche.

    Hamaree Rasoi

  3. Slurp, super inviting chicken chanp,makes me hungry..

  4. This looks beautiful Sayantani...Very very rich looking gravy !!

  5. hi sayantanhi, this is a great chicken dish..looks very rich
    wow, i like it when you say about taste buds that can tell whether ginger or garlic is being added first to a cooking.
    looking forward to visit more :) have a nice day

  6. Looks so good and I want to taste the right away...

  7. Once in a while erokom rich gravy wala khabar khete khub icche hoye. Eta jodio porota diye darun lagbe, amar toh biryani diye mekhe kobji dubiye chete pute khete icche korche. Dekho tomar post dekhe ami kemon jongli hoye giyechi. :D

  8. delicious looking gravy curry I like the addition of the aroma from kewra and rose water :)
    do check out the event food palette series rainbow colours hope you can join
    regards Akheela

  9. This dish looks awesome....i am bookmarking it...

  10. Loved this spicy thick gravy.
    Thanks for dropping by.
    You have a wonderful collection..
    Happy to follow u

  11. Gravy ta darun hoyeche Sayantani..sattu deba mangsho te amaar jonno noton idea..amra keora ba rose water na diye hi mangsho ranna kori ..tobe once in a while eyi flavouring dile besh bhalo ekta sugondho hoye..hugs and smiles

  12. This curry looks so good .I would love to try this but I don't have sattu and kearo water can you suggest a substitute for both.

  13. @Vidhya, give keora water a miss if you dont have it. this is a flavouring agent and only make a difference in the aroma.

    for sattu am really not sure what could be a substitute. dry roasted besan (chickpea flour) seems like a substitute but am not confident about the smell. try once hope things will work.

  14. @Priti, thanks.

    @Deepa, ami to kichui randchi na. tumi ja banao, dekhlei jibhe jol.

    @Sharmila, ha ha bhalo bolecho. amader barite rich ranna akdom korina. tabe party hole I go all out. eta sabar khub bhalo legechilo. akbar try kore dekho. bhalo lagbei.

  15. @Jaya, amio kakahno sattu dini. ebarei prothom. actually this recipe called for this after a lot of deliberation I decided to use it.

    @cookingvarieties: thanks for visiting me. am happy that you liked my page.

  16. I like that spice mix..will be a great combo with my veggies..and what is the it atta?

  17. @Sanjeeta, sattu is not atta. rather its the powder of various lentil mix. this is very popular in Bihar where savory items are prepared with this. also sattu ka sherbet is said to cool our body. I have updated the post with a wiki link. please check fo more information.

  18. Looks delicious! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  19. ooof ki fatafati dekhte hoyechey!! i have never used Shattu in a curry, tho use toasted besan for tikka and grilling.. the purpose I think is for better coating? I have to give this a try. I use keora or a tiny drop of attar when i make regular chicken curry kosha and it makes a lot of difference. i would love this with some roomali roti or paratha. Biryani ta aladai khabo raita diye :)

  20. How have you been sayantani? Looking at the recent postings here you look well fed and happy :)
    Loved all these recipes and those shim recipes will be tried very soon:)

  21. Beautiful clicks dear!!!! looks so tempting and yummy!!

  22. mukhe jol ashe gelo je !! I hear u my friend. My family is the same and when I tell Ma and we are having salad for dinner .. she gets confused :)
    This is looking just so awsm !

  23. I made this yesterday and wow was it good! Very nice recipe. Thanks for this one.

  24. i was just carried away by the photo of this dish .i wanted to try this recipe and have bookmarked it for a very long time.can u tell where u get sattu ,bec i think without that the dish is not complete.


  25. @Anon, not sure where you live. if you are in Kolkata then go to Spencer's. even para shops also stock this. in other parts of India you have to check in the local shops.
    if you dont get it anywhere then dry roast some besan or chickpea flour till a nutty aroma rises. do not over roast it. it should not change the colour. cool and use instead.

  26. Hi Sayantani,

    I went through quite a few of your recipes and I liked them all. This particular one sounds and looks like a delicious recipe and I definitely want to try it out. I am confused about the quantity of one ingredient here and want to clarify that. How much sattu should I use? You have mentioned 11/3 tbsp. That is not clear to me.

  27. @Sucharita, its one and one third table spoon

    1. Of course! How silly of me to get confused. Thank you very much. Nice of you to reply. Will try making this dish and let you know how I fare.

  28. Ohh that fine Sucharita. make it and let me know. between just saw your blog. now am off to explore it.

  29. Is there any alternative for "Sattu: 11/3 tbsp", I live in CA. Honestly I'm not sure if we can get it here or not.
    Thanks a lot for sharing the recipe.

  30. @Tanu, use dry roasted besan (chickpea flour) instead.

  31. Made it yesterday, tasted great! Thank you for the recipe! The only question I have is - why mine didn't turn out the same color? Instead of reddish/yellowish, it was a much brown in color. Any idea? Thanks.

  32. @Anon. thanks for trying this recipe and really glad that you liked it.
    the colour variation can come from various reason. the colour of the red chili powder, frying the spices, even the caramelisation of the juices can cause variation in colour.

  33. Looks so amazing...would be on my cards to try it soon...:)

  34. I came across your blog while looking for some Indian food recipes and liked a lot. How amazing! I will keep an eye out for all your recipes :)


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