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- 1 chicken, about 1. 4kg/3lb 5ml/1 tsp sugar
- 75g/30z/1 cup desiccated coconut
- 4 small red or white onions, roughly chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2.5cm/1in piece fresh root ginger, peeled and sliced
- 1-2 lemon grass stalks, root trimmed
- 2.5 cm/5 in piece fresh galangal, peeled and sliced
- 75 ml/5 tbsp groundnut oil or vegetable oil
- 10-15ml/2-3 tsp chilli powder or to taste
- 400ml/14fl oz can coconut milk 10ml/2 tsp salt
- Fresh chives and deep-fried anchovies, to garnish
- Joint the chicken into 8 pieces and remove the skin, sprinkle with the sugar and leave to stand for 1 hour.
- Dry fry the coconut in a wok or large frying pan over medium to low heat, turning all the time until it is crisp and golden. Transfer the fried coconut to a food processor and process to an oily paste. Transfer to a bowl and reserve.
- Add the onions, garlic and ginger to the processor. Cut off the lower 5cm/2in of the lemon grass, chop and add to the processor with the galangal. Process to a fine paste.
- Heat the oil in a wok or large pan and fry the onion mixture for a few minutes. Reduce the heat, stir in the chilli powder and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly. Spoon in 120ml/4fl oz/1/2 cup of the coconut milk and salt to taste.
- As soon as the mixture bubbles, add the chicken pieces, turning them until they are well coated with the spices. Pour in the coconut milk, stirring constantly to prevent curdling. Bruise the top of the lemon grass stalks and add to the wok or pan. Cover and cook gently for 40-45 minutes until the chicken is tender.
- Just before serving stir in the coconut paste. Bring to just below boiling point, then simmer for 5 minutes. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with fresh chives and deep-fried anchovies.