Chettinad cookbook Chettinad Chicken

Chettinad Chicken:

Chettinad chicken
Chettinad chicken with little Gravy

From Tamilnadu in South India, Chettinad Chicken is a fiery curry.Speciality in this is the freshly ground spices,we add and the perfection of cooking makes this dish more tastier and world famous dish.This chettinad chicken masala is so good, spicy and aromatic dish liked by all age and matches with most of the main dishes from south to north.


1 tbsp poppy seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp aniseed/fennel seeds
3 dry red chillies
1″ piece of cinnamon
2 cardamom pods
3 cloves
1/2 cup grated coconut
2 tsps ginger paste
2 tsps garlic paste
2-3 tbsps vegetable/sunflower/canola oil or ghee
10-15 curry leaves
2 large onions sliced fine
2 tomatoes chopped fine
1 tsp chilli powder (optional)
1 kg chicken
Salt to taste
2 tsps lime juice
Chopped coriander leaves to garnish

To Season:

Cinnamon-2 pieces
Fennel seeds-1 teaspoon
Birinji leaf-little
Curry leaf little
To Marinate:
Traditionally chicken is not marinated before cooking in Chettinad chicken.As they used to cook in low fire for a long time in olden days the chicken will get the salt and hot taste once it gets cooked. These days the chicken we use is tender and gets cooked fast in gas stove. So you can marinate by mixing turmeric powder and salt for 15 to 20 minutes
To grind:

Heat a heavy pan or skillet on a medium flame and roast the poppy, coriander, cumin and fennel seeds, dry red chillies, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and coconut for 3-4 minutes. Remove from flame and allow to cool. Grind the mixture into a coarse powder or wet grind paste

To cook:

Keep the kadai in the stove. Season the curry with the items given in ‘to season’ in 2 tablespoons of oil.

Add the onions and saute with a pinch of salt for 3 minutes.

When the onions turn transparent add the ginger, garlic, sauté for some time
Add the chopped tomatoes. Sauté till the whole thing gets smashed
Now add the chicken pieces saute for a while.

Add the ground paste Sauté it nicely to mix all the masala over the chicken pieces.

You can see lot of water oozes out from the chicken. Reduce the flame and cook for 10 to 15 minutes.(Close and cook for 15 minutes you can add water if you need).

Once you find that the chicken pieces are almost cooked increase the flame so that the gravy becomes thick.Cook for another 5 minutes.If you want more gravy finally add 1/4 cup of coconut milk.

That’s it…spicy & aromatic Chettinad Chicken ready. Garnish with Cilantro and curry leaves and serve hot with rice/idly/dosa or hot Rice.

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