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3 bowls Kawsay on table

Kawsay or Khow suey - Chicken and spaghetti in coconut milk

We love Kawsay at my house. Kawsay or khow/Khou suey is a comforting burmese dish made with meat/chicken and spaghetti in coconut milk. There are so many variations to the dish. Like a thai curry, you can make a red version or a green version, use noodles or spaghetti, chicken or lamb and the list goes on. This is a version I learnt from my inlaws.

Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine Burmese, Thai
Keyword Khoi suey, Khou Suey, Kow say
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 376 kcal
Author Safira


  • 500 g Spaghetti
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 2 large Onions Diced
  • 8 cloves Garlic
  • 1.5 inch Ginger
  • 3 - 7 Green chillies I use 7
  • 1 Large bunch Coriander Leaves and Stems
  • 1 tsp Mint leaves Optional
  • 1 tsp Cumin powder
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1 Chicken cleaned and cut into 8 pieces or just use legs/thighs
  • 2 tins Coconut milk
  • 1 Lemon/Lime Juice only


  1. Make the spaghetti according to the pack instructions but reduce the time by half.

  2. Drain the spaghetti and pour a tbsp of oil over the top to stop it from sticking together.

  3. In a large non stick pan over medium/low heat, cook the onions in the oil until golden brown. This takes about 10 - 15 minutes.

  4. Whilst the onions are cooking, in a food processor, add water, chillies, ginger, garlic, coriander, mint (If using), cumin and salt and pepper. Blend to a paste.

  5. Once the onions are cooked, pour the paste into the pot and add the chicken.
  6. Turn the heat down and cook covered for about 10 minutes. Stir occasionally during this time to make sure the mixture isn't sticking.

  7. Now pour over the coconut milk (including water).
  8. Bring to a boil, cover the pan and simmer gently for 15 - 20 minutes or until the chicken is tender. (Cooking time will depend on the size of the chicken).

  9. Stir the spaghetti into the pot.
  10. Ladle into 6 bowls and squeeze a bit of lemon over the top.

Recipe Notes

You can add a variety of toppings to Kawsay. These include fried onions, red onion, coriander, fried pastry, chillies, boiled eggs, fried garlic.

You can also add 4 or 5 kafir lime leaves when you add the paste and add fish sauce and palm sugar too.

Nutrition Facts
Kawsay or Khow suey - Chicken and spaghetti in coconut milk
Amount Per Serving
Calories 376 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 256mg11%
Potassium 207mg6%
Carbohydrates 68g23%
Fiber 5g21%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 11g22%
Vitamin A 10IU0%
Vitamin C 11mg13%
Calcium 26mg3%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.