Travancore Chicken Curry – With Video
Ingredients (Serves 5 – 6)
1. Chicken – 1 kg, cut into medium-small pieces
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Pepper powder – 1/4 tsp
Salt – As required
2. Coconut oil – 2.5 – 3 tbsp
3. Onion – 1 large, thinly sliced (Makes about 2 – 2.5 cups)
4. Ginger-garlic paste – 1 tbsp
Green chilies – 2 – 3, ground to a coarse mixture in the small jar of a mixie or crushed in a mortar and pestle
5. Tomato – 1 large, chopped
6. Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Kashmiri chilli powder (good quality) / medium spicy chilli powder– 2 – 3 tsp (adjust according to your spice tolerance)
Coriander powder – Around 1 – 1.5 tbsp
Garam masala powder – 3/4 tsp
9. Salt – To taste
10. Curry leaves – 1 sprig
11. Cilantro – 3 – 4 tbsp finely chopped, to garnish (optional)
12. Coconut oil – 1 tbsp
13. Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
Dried red chilly – 1, broken
Sliced coconut / thenga kothu – 2 tbsp
Pearl onions / kochulli – 3, thinly sliced
Curry leaves – A few
1. Marinate chicken pieces with 1/4 tsp turmeric powder, 1/4 tsp pepper powder and salt. Keep in the refrigerator overnight or for at least 30 minutes. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before you are ready to cook.
2. Heat 2 – 3 tbsp coconut oil in a large heavy-bottomed pan / wok over medium-high heat. Add sliced onion, little salt and saute until onion turns transparent. Add ginger-garlic paste, ground green chilly and saute until onion turns golden brown, about 15 minues. Add turmeric powder, chilly powder, coriander powder and garam masala powder. Mix well and saute until their raw smell is gone. Add tomatoes, salt and mix well. Cover and cook until they turn mushy, about 4 – 5 minutes. Switch off. Transfer this sauteed onion tomato mixture to a bowl and set aside.
2. In the same pan, add the marinated chicken pieces. Mix well and cook covered for 6 – 8 minutes until water oozes out from the chicken pieces, stirring in between. Add the sauteed onion tomato mixture to this and mix really well. Cook for 5 – 7 minutes. Add 1 cup hot water and mix well. Cover and cook for about 20 – 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cook until chicken pieces are completely done and oil floats on top. Check for salt and add a pinch of garam masala powder, if required. Garnish with chopped cilantro (optional). Once the curry is done, you can add 1/2 cup thick coconut milk for and extra taste and for more gravy.
3. Heat 1 tbsp coconut oil in a small pan. Splutter mustard seeds and fry dry red chilly. Add sliced coconut and stir until light golden. Next add sliced pearl onions, curry leaves and fry until pearl onions turn golden brown. Pour this seasoning over the chicken curry. Cover with a lid for few minutes. Mix well. Serve with chapathis, pulao, idiyappam, porotta, plain rice etc.