Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Curry Leaves Chicken (Karuvepilai Chicken)

Its time to post a non-vegetarian recipe. I love the tantalizing flavor of curry leaves. A bit of this brings out a traditional flavor in everything I cook, especially in non vegetarian dishes. Nothing can beat the freshly seasoned curry leaves on coconut chutney. I used to dislike this during childhood as it was painful to pick them out while eating. With the years going by though, like many of you, I’ve developed a true love to these leaves. Now, given a chance, I’d add them to anything I cook.

This is a dish that I have been waiting to post for a long time.  The first time I tasted this was at a local restaurant in India. It was delicious and ever since I have been drooling over this dish. I messed up the pictures when I made this last time and after a long time I made this again recently. 

  • Chicken thighs (boneless) - 2 pounds
  • Curry leaves - 1/2 cup
  • Onions - 2 medium sized - finely chopped
  • Tomatoes - 2 medium sized - finely chopped
  • Ginger - 2 inches
  • Garlic - 4 cloves
  • Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Chilli powder - 2 tsp
  • Corriander powder - 4 tsp
  • Cinnamon - 1 inch
  • Cloves - 2
  • Cardamom - 1
  • Fennel seeds - 2 tsp
  • Sesame oil - 2 tbsp


  • Wash and cut the chicken into 2 inch pieces. Marinate the chicken pieces with turmeric powder, 1 tsp chillipowder and salt for atleast 30 mins.
  • Make a paste out of ginger, garlic, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, 1 tsp fennel seeds, curry leaves (save a few for seasoning) and a handful of chopped onions. Add just a little water.
  • Heat sesame oil in a large wok (cast iron pans are perfect). Season with the remaining 1 tsp of fennel seeds.
  • Add chopped onions, a few curry leaves and fry well until the onions change color.
  • Add the ground paste, remaining 1 tsp chilli powder and corriander powder and fry in medium heat for a min.
  • Add the tomatoes, mix well, cover and let it cook in low heat for 5 - 8 mins, until the spices and tomatoes are cooked well.
  • Add the marinated chicken, mix well and cover it again in medium heat for 10 - 15 mins until the chicken is fully cooked. Add very little water if necessary as the chicken and tomatoes release a lot of moisture.
  • After the chicken is fully cooked, increase the heat and let all the liquid evaporate while gently stirring the chicken continuously.
  • Turn off the heat after the chicken reaches the correct consistency as you desire.
 Perfect for Sambar and Rasam rice... but nothing can beat this dish with curd rice!


Cham said...

Cooking with sesame oil sounds delicious too. I love the curry leaves in non-veg dishes it really gives a stand out flavor. Good one!

Abdul Rahman said...

Looks so tempting....
Indian spices
Spices powder

Corporate to Kitchen said...

I I love the curry leaf flavor & ur dish looks very delicious. I can also imagine the taste & flavor of this dish. Yummm

Honoré Bazin said...

Actually am a chicken food lover, thanks for hosting the recipe. I like your all food guides.

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Anu Priya said...

Best Recipe. I loved it. Thanks for sharing the wonderful recipe with us. Spices Online