Monthly Mystery Munchies #12: Ayam Kapitan (Captain’s Chicken Curry)


Happiest one year anniversary, my dearest Ann!

Happiest one year anniversary, my dearest Ann!

This month marks my and Ann from Grubbs n Critters‘ one year Monthly Mystery Munchies anniversary, and what a pleasure it has been! I’ve been challenged to create new recipes by thinking outside the box, pushing my gastronomical boundaries, and devising new ways of cooking, tasting and thinking about food. It’s been a tasty treat for sure, and I’ve had an immense amount of fun doing it. Happy one year anniversary Ann, and thank you for coming up with this fabulous idea! This has tremendously broadened my horizons (and waistline, but oh well).

Captain's Curry 10This month we did a culture swap. You see, Ann is originally from Singapore, although she’s been living in Thailand for over a decade, and she’s about to move to Holland. Sheesh, busy times! I’m from South Africa, no exciting worldly experiences for me. What a pleb. However, we have so many different cultures here, and thus so many different influences, one of them being Malay. I love curry! I mean, I’m obsessed. So when Ann suggested we ‘swap’ countries, I was thrilled. Just one thing: there’s a lot of food commonly used in Singaporean dishes that we don’t have here. Crap. Not to worry, I found a spice shop close by. Some women spend hours shopping for (faffing over) clothes, shoes, accessories, whatever. I, on the other hand, can easily get lost in a food shop. I was totally enthralled. The Husband wasn’t eager to spend hours there (his loss), so I grabbed the stuff I needed and promised to return. Probably on my own. With his credit card.

Back to my Singaporean dish – behold Ayam Kapitan. Yeah, I also had no clue. Turns out it’s a chicken curry, using interesting and exciting ingredients, some of which I wouldn’t usually use. Some of the ingredients I already had in my cupboard, others required a slight search. No worries, I enjoy a challenge. This dish uses some of my favouritist (that’s a word, ‘kay?) food – oh hi garlic, ginger, coconut cream, lemon grass (homegrown in my very own garden, no less) – basically I love every single ingredient. I’d never cooked with tamarind paste before, so that was an intriguing experience. I mean, I felt so *exotic*! Anyways folks, this dish is absolutely delectable. It perfectly fuses all of the ingredients to create a creamy, spicy (but not too hot), citrus-y beauty of a meal. By The Husband’s instruction (sometimes I allow him to think he has a say), I will be cooking this meal again. And again, and again, and then again. Here you go:


Ayam Kapitan (Captain's Chicken Curry)

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


Captain's Curry 71 teaspoons tamarind paste
1 red onion
3 leeks
2 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon grated ginger
2 green chillies (I leave the seeds in)
3 tablespoons macadamia nuts
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon chicken stock
3 tablespoons lemon grass stalks
4 lime leaves
1 tin (400ml) coconut cream
1/2 tin (200ml) coconut milk
2 tablespoons canola oil
Freshly cracked sea salt and black pepper
Coriander to serve (optional)

Making It Happen:

Captain's Curry 51. In a blender, blitz the tamarind paste, onion, leeks, garlic, ginger, chillies, 1 tablespoon macadamia nuts, turmeric, and chicken stock, to form a paste. Add the coconut cream and give it one last blitz. Pour the mixture over the chicken, marinating it for an hour (or overnight).


Captain's Curry 32. In a large pan or pot, heat the canola oil over medium-high heat. Remove the chicken from the marinade and fry 4-5 minutes per side, until browned.



Captain's Curry 113. Pour in the remaining marinade over the chicken and add the coconut milk and cinnamon stick. Cover and boil for 5 minutes, then turn down the heat and partially cover, simmering for 45 minutes – 1 hour until the chicken is tender. Season with salt and pepper and serve on a bed of rice. Garnish with macadamia nuts and coriander.

Captain's Curry 4Remember to remove the lime leaves and cinnamon stick before serving!


5 thoughts on “Monthly Mystery Munchies #12: Ayam Kapitan (Captain’s Chicken Curry)

  1. Happy, happy, happy Anniversary, Gen! Wow! I love how your first picture looked like with all the chicken covered in marinade. Ayam Kapitan is a great choice – it’s a Malay and Chinese fusion and is a Peranakan (otherwise known as “Nyonya”) cuisine. And, you know, this is one Singaporean dish I have NOT made before believe it or not. I’m so very glad you did this because I’m inspired to try this! Love it! D

    (And I’m so very sorry you have to go through all that trouble to get the ingredients. Eeeks!!I’ll be happy to send some to you if you tell me what. But quick, I won’t be in Asia for much longer!)

    I learnt another new word from you again – Pleb! Hahaha! Have not heard that one before.

    Muaaackkks! xoxo.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Annnnn! One of the things I love about our MMM is that is challenges me – and searching for some of the ingredients (lime leaves and tamarind paste), and cooking with them for th first time, is all part of the massive fun I have every month! You always make me want to try new things by just looking at your recipes! Thank you for opening my mind to new ideas!
      Yes, I saw that it’s a fusion dish which is even cooler. I was worried it would be too Chinese, but I Googled it and it does seem to be half Malay/half Chinese. It was so nice to do this recipe, I had a lot of fun, and it made me think about you cooking with this stuff frequently.
      Your babotie – duuuuude, that’s a classic SA dish – well done! Oh and it’s one of my faves! Full marks to you and Silver Bullet. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY TO US! XOXOXOXO

      Liked by 1 person

      • You’ve got that absolutely right, Gen. It’s Malay-Chinese fusion or Peranakan/Nyonya. It’s another culture altogether originating from Penang and they made their way to Singapore long long while ago. I love Peranakan food and it has one of the best cuisines around! Definitely a good choice! And I’m glad you love it and you reminded me that the cuisine exists! Can you imagine it is hardly top of mind for me. And it’s great!! Thank you for that. XOXOXO.

        May is all yours! Looking forward to the next challenge you’ll unleash! 😀 (I realised I goofed in my earlier email thinking that May is actually #12. Duh!)


  2. Pingback: Monthly Mystery Munchies #12: Going South African with Bobotie

  3. Pingback: Monthly Mystery Munchies #12 with Gen

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