May 28, 2013

Traditional Chicken Curry / Nagercoil Chicken Kulambu

This is the chicken curry which we make on most of the occasion, when there is parties, functions or regular weekends. This is the curry which i learned to cook my first non veg curry. Because you can never go wrong with them. It is so basic, the spice which we add is store bought chicken masala powder. If you cannot find that add a mixture of chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and garam masala powder. But i am sure that you can find chicken masala powder in any shop.

This curry taste great with rice, paratha, roti, idli, dosa or anything. It is a very versatile curry. I hope you will love it and let me know what you think.

Preparation Time : 10 mins
Cooking Time : 1  hour
Serves - 3 to 4


Chicken - 500 grams / 1/2 kg
Oil - 1/4 cup
Cinnamon / Pattai - 1 small piece
Bay Leaf - 1
Cardamom / Yelakai - 4
Onion - 2 large sliced
Curry leaves -  1 spring
Salt to taste
Turmeric powder / Manjal podi - 1 tsp
Ginger Garlic paste - 2 tblspn
Chicken Masala Powder - 3 to 4 tblspn
Tomatoes - 4 large chopped
Coconut - 1 cup
Fennel Seed / Saunf / Sombu - 1 tblspn
Water as needed
Coriander Leaves / Cilantro for garnishing


Take coconut and fennel seeds in a mixer and make into a fine paste. Set this aside till use.

Heat oil in a kadai. Add in cinnamon, bay leaf and cardamom and saute them.

Add in onions and curry leaves and saute this for 5 mins.

Now add in salt and turmeric powder and mix well. Saute this till the onions turn golden.

Now add in Ginger Garlic Paste and saute for a min.

Add in chicken masala powder and saute for a min.

Add in tomatoes and cook till it turns mushy.
Now add in chicken and toss well with the masala.

Add in some water and bring it to a boil. Cover and simmer the pan for 30 to 35 mins.

Now add in ground coconut masala and mix well. Cover again and simmer for 15 to 20 mins.

Now the oil will float on top. Garnish with coriander leaves and mix well.

Serve with rice.

Grind Coconut and Fennel Seeds together

Grind them to a very smooth paste

Heat oil and crackle some whole spices

Add in onions and curry leaves

Sprinkle some salt and turmeric powder

Saute for a while

Cook this till it turns golden

Add a good amount of ginger garlic paste

Saute till raw smell goes away

Now add in your fav chicken masala powder

mix well

Add in tomatoes

Cook this till oil separates

Add in cleaned chicken pieces

Toss well with the masala

Pour some water

Mix well

Bring everything to a good boil

Cover and simmer

Till chicken is cooked

Add in coconut masala

Mix well again

Cover again and simmer

Till oil leaves from the curry

Garnish with cilantro



  1. Chicken curry looks very tempting... Todays post :

  2. yummy chicken curry... love that "chatti" of urs... :)

  3. The curry looks very authentic & I like the way you have presented it.

  4. You seemed to left out the tomatoes under "method"....just a typo, perhaps. Look fwd to trying this soon.

  5. Your traditional curry looks soooooo good. Haven't been cooking curry for some time.

  6. Ummmm!!! delicius. I love it!!!. Kisses!!

  7. simply awesome and delicious looking chicken curry. wonderfully prepared.

  8. really awesome recipe..i tried it myself and it came out really well...indeed a new taste ..thanks a lot aarti....and thanks for creating such a wonderful blog....really hats off to u.....

  9. one of my favourite . There is lotz of mouth watery dishes which we never get outside areas other than nagercoil which we dont even get in hotels itself . i had lotz of dishes which i never had anywhere around tamilnadu only unforgettable food i had at my relatives house and also in marriage halls at nagercoil .hope you will bring it to outside world .your dishes are famous to all my friends and colleagues .thanks mrs.chef nagercoil.

  10. I love cooking & I keep browsing the internet to see if I can come across a nice & user friendly website which gives me varieties to cook. And this page is just awesome, I need all that I want, & with pictures it makes it a lot easier to know how a recipe has to be cooked & what spices needs to be added, I'm going to try this dish this weekend :). Thank you so much for this recipe & keep posting.

  11. Nice dish the stepwise pictures are super please tell substitute of chicken masala and give the onion tomotto in grams

  12. @kamalaveniYou can use mixture of chilli, coriander, cumin, pepper and garam masal powder. And onion is around 300 grams. Tomato is around 350 grams

  13. Thankyou aarthi and please give the ratio of chilli,coriander,cumin,pepper and garam masala and also tell the common weight in one onion and one tomotto

  14. looks good but no chilli powder or green chillies?? how does it taste???

  15. @AnonymousThe chicken masala powder which u putt has chilli powder in it.

  16. This sounds so delicious. Thanks for sharing this recipe.


  17. when to add salt??

  18. @Anonymousadd while the onions are cooking

  19. I started cooking after seeing ur recipes. Thank u so much teaching me cooking .

  20. @kamalaveniHi Aarthi,
    Nice a beginner in can you please let men know the ratio of chilli powder . Cumin powder,dhania powder garam masala in the case of alternate to chicken masala powder.
    Thank you.

  21. Also the ratio for pepper,coriander powder also .thank you.

  22. @Anonymousif you add chilli powder add two times coriander powder to chilli powder. Cumin, turmeric can be added just a tsp. Pepper also a tsp must be good.More over spices are to can taste and adjust it

  23. I tried it today.. Came out very well..nice recipe.. But instead of readymade powders like chicken masala pls give recipes with our own masala preparations.. Tat wil add more taste to our traditional recipes..Thank you

  24. Finally a proper blog for Cooking Newbies like myself. Thank you Aarthi :)

  25. Hey Aarthi,
    This recipe looks yummy.Am a regular follower of your blog!! Keep going!! Waiting for more exciting recipes from your side!!!! I am happy that you are using our
    chicken masala.

    1. All the credits goes to chicken masala. Because it contains all the species which give special authentic taste

  26. Can u plz tell garammasala ratio for substitute...

  27. @Anonymous u have to use chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder and garam masala powder if u dont have that chicken masala powder

  28. Hi. I tried this and it's very yummy. I tried it two ways. One without the coconut and saunf and the other with. Both were great. I loved it without. It was like how my mother used to make. Also I didnt have store bought masala so I used the combo you suggested and it was quite good! Thanks again for this! I finally found my go to chicken preparion.


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