Herbs · Indian · Non Vegetarian · Sides · South Indian · Starters · Tamil Nadu

Pork Chukka


Hi All, it’s been a while since I posted a recipe.. 3 days seems to be a while for me..Hope all of you had an awesome weekend and kick started your week real well.. 🙂 Will surely make up for those 3 days I lost..

Chukka is a very famous coconuty starter that you will find in most South Indian restaurants. Each of the South Indian states (Karnataka, Tamil, Nadu, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh) have their own version of this dish & the way the dish is spelt or pronounced would vary a little. Chukka is a world used in the state of Tamil Nadu, popularly you would find Mutton (Goat meat) Chukka/Chicken Chukka in the menu’s of restaurants.

A closer look at the chukka..

I decided to try out the same dish with some pork, since you do not find Mutton here in Glasgow. As mentioned earlier there are many ways to prepare this dish i.e. each state has the recipe influenced by their cuisine & the spices used differ.

I prefer to pressure cook pork or mutton when I prepare this dish, as the meat cooks soon this way.
Tip: Chicken does not need to be pressure cooked, if you plan to use the same recipe for chicken.

Preferably use boneless pork pieces. I used Pork loin steaks & cut them into bite size pieces. Removed the most of fat off as well.

This dish is perfect as a starter for a nice quiet afternoon on a hot sunny with a few rounds of beer, that is if you like South Indian food.

Ingredients: (Serves 4)               Preparation Time: 30 mins
Pork loin – 500 gms, cut into bite size pieces as shown, washed & drained
Onion – 1 large, finely chopped, divided into 2 portions
Turmeric powder – a pinch
Red Chilli powder – 1/2 tsp or more depending on your taste
Curry leaves – 1 sprig or 6-7 leaves, roughly torn
Bay leaf – 1 medium-sized leaf, roughly torn
Cooking oil – 2 tbsp
Salt to taste

To prepare the masala powder:
Garlic – 4 cloves, chopped
Ginger – 1/2 inch piece, cut
Cardamom – 4 whole if they are small, else 3 medium-sized
Cloves – 4
Cumin seeds – 1.5 tbsp
Coriander seeds – 1.5 tbsp
Desiccated Coconut – 3 tbsp
Dried Red chilli’s – 6, make sure you use a spicy variety
Fennel seeds – 1 tsp, Tip: If you want the authentic Chettinad flavour, add 1/2 tsp extra
Cinnamon – 2 inch long piece

Method:
Except the ginger, garlic & desiccated coconut, dry roast all the ingredients mentioned under the masala powder list till they turn light brown in colour.

Dry roast the spices..

Keep aside. Let them cool down to room temperature.

Once the roasted spices have cooled down, powder all the ingredients mentioned under the masala powder list. Do not use any water. Coarsely powder them as shown.

The masala powder ready..

Go ahead take a whiff of this powder :), remember to keep your nose at least 5 inches away else I’m sure you will end up sneezing.. 😉 Keep this aside.

Pork cut into bite size pieces..

Now heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pressure cooker. When the oil is hot add one portion of the finely chopped onions. Add some salt and make sure heat is set to medium. Sauté the onions till they turn translucent. Add a pinch of turmeric & add the freshly ground spice powder. Lower heat and fry the masala along with the onions & do not let the masala blacken.

After about 3-4 minutes add the washed, cut pork pieces. Mix well.

Add the pork to the fried masala..

Add about 250 ml water, the water added should be such that you still see the one layer of pork pieces outside & not in water. The meat will shrink & let out some water. Add some salt & mix.

Increase the heat & let the water begin to boil. Close the pressure cooker with its lid and cook the pork for 4 whistles. Turn off the heat & let the pressure cooker cool & let out the pressure built inside. The whole room fills with a heavenly blend of spices & cooking meat. 🙂

Meanwhile heat 1 tbsp oil in a deep bottom frying pan. Set the heat to medium. When the oil is hot, add a bay leaf, sauté it. Next, sauté the other portion of chopped onions. Add the red chilli powder when the onions begin to turn light brown in colour. Lower heat & fry the red chilli powder. By now the pressure cooker should be ready to open. Open the pressure cooker. You would notice that the gravy in the cooker will be end up getting thick if the excess water present is taken away.

Tip: If you are in a hurry & you want to get done with this dish quickly, do not add all the water. I added all the water as I had the time to slow cook the pork.

Transfer all its contents into the frying pan. Mix well. We will slow cook the pork to a 100% so that the excess water evaporates and the masala blends well into the meat.

Tip: If you change your mind & do not mind eating the meat in a curry then turn off the heat when you achieve a consistency good enough to go with some steamed rice or chapatis’. I was damn hungry, took a portion out with some curry to go with some bread 😀 & I let the water evaporate from the rest as I wanted a starter.

Check salt & adjust. Add the curry leaves.Lower the heat. Let the mixture bubble & let the oil separate.

Tip: I did not want the excess oil floating on the top of the dish, so I just used a tissue & took away the excess oil.

In about 10-12 minutes all the water should evaporate, leaving behind a good amount of thick masala around the meat pieces. Turn off the heat.

Garnishing:
Garnish with some additional curry leaves if you require that sensational aroma from fresh some curry leaves in the dish.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot.  I prefer this on a nice hot sunny afternoon with some beer while catching up with some friends…

Pork Chukka.Or  you could use this as a side dish & have it along with some cold curd rice too..

If you liked this recipe you may also like – Egg SukkaBacon wrapped onion parcels, Basic South-Indian Chicken curry – Chicken Masala..

 

 

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