Some of the ingredients. Make sure the paste is prepared before starting the cooking process. Wash the chicken pieces and set to drain.
Start by heating oil in a wok on medium heat. This will prevent the chicken from being undercooked later.
While the oil is heating, dice the tomatoes and keep aside.
Add the chicken to the wok and shallow fry till it turns white. Make sure the chicken does not stick to the bottom of the wok by constantly turning the pieces.
This is what the pieces should look like halfway through.
When the chicken turns white all over, remove about a third of the oil remaining in another vessel and keep aside.
When the chicken is white all over, add the paste. If it starts to burn or stick to the bottom of wok, reduce heat slightly. Alternately, keep adding water and letting it dry out little at a time.
In the removed oil, add the turmeric and chili powders. The chili powder is mainly for colour and does not make it spicy. If your powder is spicy, then you can skip the green chilies.
The general rule for proper cooking of the paste is when the smell of ginger and garlic is neutralized. But, depending on personal taste, it can be cooked slightly less to give added aroma.
For those trying the paste in cooking for the first time, can experiment with what is acceptable for yourself. Although I would recommend that it be cooked for 5-6 minutes.
Next, add the tomatoes and stir thoroughly.
After a while, it should start looking like this. As the tomatoes start to cook, their water is drained which helps form the gravy. Cook on medium heat till the tomatoes soften up a little.
When the tomatoes start to turn a little mushy and the water consistency goes down a bit, add the oil and powder mixture prepared and mix to infuse the color and flavour. Add some water if necessary.
Note: This step is optional, depending on personal tastes. Since tomatoes tend to make gravies sweeter, chili is added to give it that extra spice. If you don't like spicy food, then skip this step.
As there is chili already in the paste, it will provide a little balance to the flavours.
Now add the allspice mixture and cook for 5-10 minutes. Garnish with coriander before serving. Goes well with white rice or Indian flat-bread.