A Taste Of Kerala: Authentic Chicken Curry Recipe

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Kerala Chicken Curry: A Taste of South India

Kerala chicken curry is a vibrant and flavorful dish that explodes with the aromatic spices of South India. The tender chicken simmers in a rich coconut milk gravy infused with curry leaves, ginger, garlic, and a unique blend of warming spices. This recipe is a delightful introduction to the culinary delights of Kerala and is sure to tantalize your taste buds.

kerala chicken curry - Indian hotel style
kerala chicken curry – Indian hotel style


1 kg bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces (thighs, drumsticks, or a combination)

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 inch ginger, grated
  • 2 green chilies, slit lengthwise (adjust for spice preference)
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp red chili powder (adjust for spice preference)
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 400 ml coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp curry leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped, for garnish (optional)

  • Directions:

    1. Marinate the Chicken: Wash the chicken pieces thoroughly and pat them dry with paper towels. In a large bowl, combine the chicken with 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil, ginger, garlic, coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric powder, red chili powder, and garam masala. Mix well to coat the chicken pieces evenly. Set aside to marinate for at least 30 minutes, or preferably overnight, for deeper flavor.

    2. Sauté the Onions: Heat the remaining tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the sliced onions and cook until softened and translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent burning.

    3. Add the Spices and Tomatoes: Once the onions are softened, add the green chilies and curry leaves. Sauté for another minute, until the curry leaves become fragrant. Stir in the chopped tomatoes and cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the tomatoes soften and release their juices.

    4. Simmer the Chicken: Add the marinated chicken pieces along with any leftover marinade in the bowl. Season with salt to taste. Pour in the coconut milk and bring the curry to a simmer. Reduce heat, cover the pot, and let the chicken simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until cooked through and tender. Stir occasionally to ensure even cooking.

    5. Finishing Touches: Once the chicken is cooked, remove the lid and increase the heat slightly. Simmer for an additional 5-7 minutes, allowing the gravy to thicken slightly. Adjust the seasoning with salt or a squeeze of fresh lime juice if desired.

    6. Serve and Enjoy: Garnish the Kerala chicken curry with chopped fresh cilantro (optional) and serve hot with steamed rice, appams, or roti. Enjoy the burst of flavors and aromas of this authentic South Indian dish!

    Nutrition Facts

    (Approximate values per serving)

    Calories: 450-500

  • Fat: 30-35g
  • Saturated Fat: 20-25g
  • Cholesterol: 150mg
  • Sodium: 500mg (depending on salt added)
  • Carbohydrates: 20-25g
  • Protein: 40-45g

  • Conclusion

    Kerala chicken curry is a delightful and versatile dish that can be enjoyed for lunch, dinner, or even as a comforting weeknight meal. The combination of tender chicken, flavorful spices, and creamy coconut milk creates a truly satisfying culinary experience. With its ease of preparation and explosion of taste, this recipe is sure to become a favorite in your kitchen.

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1. Can I use boneless, skinless chicken breasts for this recipe?

    Yes, you can use boneless, skinless chicken breasts for this recipe. However, bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces are traditionally used for Kerala chicken curry as they add richness and flavor to the dish. If using boneless, skinless chicken breasts, reduce the cooking time to avoid drying out the chicken. Aim for an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).

    2. What can I substitute for coconut milk?

    If you cannot find coconut milk, you can substitute it with an equal amount of plain yogurt or heavy cream thinned with some milk or water. However, coconut milk is the key ingredient that provides the authentic Kerala curry flavor and creamy texture.

    3. How can I adjust the spice level of this recipe?