Originally from Burma, Khao Suey is a popular dish among the Memon & Gujrati community of Pakistan. It comprises of noodles in a coconut or yoghurt based curry, with spicy chicken or beef and an array of condiments.
I first heard about Khao Suey at my university when I started my Bachelors – an exotic sounding dish that is a regular dinner meal among the Memon & Gujrati community. The origins of this dish are from Burma, where there used to be a thriving community of people from the sub-continental due to historical trading ties. Burma itself had a trading port setup by the British at Akyub (present-day Sittwe). In March 1962, when the army overthrew the current government industries were nationalized and foreigners (including South Asians) were discouraged from staying and this led to them coming back in settling in present-day India & Pakistan bringing with them back their dishes from back. The above history is from Burma:Rivers of Flavor – this absolutely brilliant book by Noami Duguid on Burmese cuisine.
From the first time I tried khao suey, I have tried many a version over the years each having their distinct flavors based on the style of cooking and personal preferences of the person cooking them. Some versions had coconut in the curry, some versions had yoghurt and some had both. Most of the versions I have had were with boneless chicken, but beef khao suey is popular too and considered the most authentic version. This is my version of Chicken Khao Suey, made after trying out various versions of the dish, and then tweaking around with recipes till I found out the version I loved.
Would love it if you could try out and rate the recipe, and let me know how it was in the comments below!
Chicken Khao Suey
Originally from Burma, Khao-Suey is a popular dish among the Memon & Gujrati community of Pakistan. It comprises of noodles in a coconut or yoghurt based curry, with spicy chicken or beef and an array of condiments which will always include crisps or Slims and a squeeze of lemon juice.
- ½ tablespoon oil
- 1 tablespoon garlic paste
- 1 tablespoon turmeric/haldi powder
- ¾ cup gram flour/besan toasted
- 300 ml coconut milk
- Salt to taste
- 3 cups water
- 4 tablespoon oil divided
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 tomatoes chopped
- 3 green chilies
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tablespoon ginger
- 1 tablespoon garlic paste
- 2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 2 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1 teaspoon turmeric/haldi
- 600 grams boneless chicken sliced
- 3-4 green chilies finely sliced
- 1/2 cup Fresh coriander chopped
- 2 spring onions sliced thinly
- 3 boiled eggs chopped
- 5-6 cloves garlic thinly sliced and fried
- 1/2 medium onion thinly sliced and fried
- 2 tablespoon Chili Oil/Paste
- 3 lemons cut into wedges
- 1 1/2 cups Fried Slims Crisps or Papri for topping
- 600 grams egg noodles boiled
For the coconut curry:
Dry roast the gram flour in a small frying pan, making sure it doesn't burn. Set it aside.
Heat oil, and saute garlic paste and turmeric for a minute till the raw flavor is removed.
Add coconut milk, and whisk in the the toasted gram flour/besan making sure there are no lumps. Add salt & water.
Keep the mixture on medium heat till it comes to a boil, then lower the heat and cook for 30-45 minutes till it thickens to desired consistency. Make sure to stir every few minutes or so to ensure it doesn't burn or lumps aren't formed. Set aside.
For the chicken:
Heat 2 tablespoon oil, saute onions till light golden.
Add tomatoes & chili and saute for 2-3 minutes till tomatoes are soft. Pour the onion, tomato & chili mixture into a blender and blend with water to a smooth paste. Set aside.
Add 2 tablespoon oil into the same pan, and turn to medium heat. Add garlic & ginger paste, along with whole cumin seeds and saute for a minute till the cumin seeds pop.
Add the blended tomato-chili paste, and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add salt, black pepper, coriander powder, cumin powder, red chili powder and turmeric.
Turn heat to low, and cook for a minute then add sliced chicken. Cook on high heat till chicken changes color from pink to white. Turn heat to low, and add a cup of water. Cook the chicken till meat is tender and oil surfaces. Set it aside.
Boil the noodles as per packet instructions and place them in a large bowl. Prepare all the condiments as per personal preference, and place them all in small bowls. The variety of condiments is on personal preference, but lemon, crisps & some form of spicy element (whether chili paste, chutney or raw chilis) is necessary to balance flavors.
Warm up the coconut curry and the chicken and serve them in medium sized bowls. To make a bowl of Khao-suey, first add the noodles in the bowl, then add coconut curry and chicken. Top with your preferred condiments and then mix it up.
Add lemon & crisps right at the end.