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Cafreal is a highly spiced chicken dish had extensively in the Indian state of Goa. It is also referred to by many cooks as the "Goan version of tandoori chicken." The dish was born in Portuguese settlements in Africa. It was brought in into the Goan cuisine by the Portuguese. The basic cafreal recipe includes onion, garlic, ginger, cinnamon, pepper, chili, mace and fresh coriander leaves. The taste of the sauce that the chicken is marinated in, is believed to resemble the renowned Portuguese Peri-peri sauce.

Ingredients Used and Popular Methods of Preparation of Cafreal

The common version of Cafreal recipe makes use of chicken as the main ingredient. The chicken can be whole chicken, butterflied chicken, game hens or chicken legs and thighs. The other ingredients include- dry red chillies, green chillies, peppercorns, cloves of garlic, piece of ginger and juice of lemon or lime.

To begin with the chicken is washed well and pat dried. It is rubbed over with a part of lime/ lemon juice combined with salt to taste. The remaining part of the juice is poured over the chicken which is allowed to sit for about 30 minutes. The spices other must be ground together into a thick paste. The paste must be applied all over the chicken, covered and allowed to marinate in the refrigerator for about 8-10 hours. The chicken must be cut into pieces of sizes of one’s own choices or preferences.

Then oil must be heated to deep fry the chicken, over medium heat. The chicken is then added to this oil and fried till it turns golden. The chicken may either be grilled if desired.

Serving and Eating Cafreal

The common way of serving Cafreal is when it is piping hot and with a fresh green salad. It can either be served hot garnished with fried onions. In a simple way it can just be sprinkled with cilantro leaves and served.

Popular Cafreal RecipeVariations

· Fish Cafreal is a cafreal recipe which uses fish.

· Paneer cafreal uses paneer or the Indian cottage cheese.

· Galinha a Cafreal is where Galinha means chicken in Portuguese that originated from Africa. It actually means "grilled chicken," but in Goa it is fried instead of being grilled.

· Frango and cafreal are Portuguese words for chicken and made by grilling.

· Murg Cafreal from Goan cuisine is a fusion food amalgamating Southern Indian, Mughal cuisine and interpretations of Portuguese cuisine.

Health and Nutrition Facts of Cafreal

Having Cafreal during a Cold brings in great relief. The spices in it including garlic, ginger, chile, cumin, cinnamon and cloves contain the healing powers.