Burmese Khow Suey - Indian Style

Photo © 2012 Petrina Verma Sarkar, licensed to About.com, Inc.
    75 min

Originally Burmese as its name suggests, this dish came to Eastern India with the many Indians who fled Burma during World War II. It is a delicious concoction of noodles, spicy chicken, and numerous toppings. The final touch is a squeeze of lemon which adds the signature tanginess. Burmese Khow Suey - Indian Style is a fun dish to make for when you're having friends over.

What You'll Need

  • 1 cup chana daal (dalt yellow lentils)
  • 5 cups warm water
  • 6-7 tablespoons of vegetable/canola/sunflower cooking oil
  • 2 medium-sized onions chopped fine
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 2 tablespoons garlic paste
  • 2 teaspoons coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 tablespoons garam masala
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons red chili powder
  • 2 pounds (1 kilogram) boneless chicken cut into 1" thick pieces (as for stir-fry)
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 pound (500 grams) uncooked thin egg noodles (serves 4)
  • 1 cup spring onions chopped fine
  • 1 cup leeks chopped fine
  • 1/4 cup fresh garlic chopped very fine
  • 1 cup boiled eggs chopped into tiny pieces
  • 5 tablespoons dry prawn powder (make by coarsely grinding dry prawns)
  • 2 cups fried spicy potato sticks (or substitute with crumbled potato chips)
  • 1 cup coriander leaves (cilantro) chopped fine
  • Juice of 1 lemon

How to Make It

  1. Boil the lentils in a pan with the warm water, till soft. Whisk/blend to completely mash the lentils.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a deep heavy-bottomed pan and add the chopped onion. Fry till soft.
  3. Add the ginger and garlic pastes and fry for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the chicken, coriander, cumin and red chilli (1 teaspoon) powders and garam masala and fry for another 5 minutes.
  5. Add the lentil paste, coconut milk, salt to taste and cook the mixture till the chicken is tender.
  6. Boil the noodles according to the instructions on the package. Strain and run cool water over them. Pour 1 tablespoon of oil over the noodles to keep them from sticking, and toss to mix well. Keep aside.
  7. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a small pan till very hot. Turn off the flame and add 1 tablespoon of red chilli powder to this oil. Keep this chilli oil aside to cool.
  8. Serve in a deep bowl (for each person) as follows: Place a single serve of noodles in the bowl. Top generously with the chicken gravy, then add the chopped garlic, spring onion, leek and boiled egg, one on top of the other as per preference. Drizzle with chilli oil and sprinkle dry prawn powder according to taste. Garnish with potato sticks and then chopped coriander leaves (cilantro). Add a twist of lemon. Enjoy!