The Easiest South Indian Chicken Curry
Updated: Jun 22
I have spent years trying to learn how to make the perfect chicken curry. The reason it is so difficult is because every single cook makes their own version of it. Every recipe online is different, all states in India have its own nuances and each of our local Singaporean cultures have a version too - Malay Kari Ayam, Indian Curry, Nonya Curry, Chinese Curry and the list goes on.
All prior attempts at making South Indian Chicken Curry has been embarrassing... so I decided to try my brother-in-law's tried and tested recipe. He makes a mean chicken curry and has made it so often, I'm beginning to think it's the only thing he knows how to cook 😝 Also, if a guy can make it then I CAN TOO AMIRITE??
The verdict? It was AMAZING. Tasted legit and was surprisingly easy. I've been doing it wrong all my life and complicating it too much. I am sharing below his recipe in hopes it will give someone the answer that I was looking for.
Recipe makes 4 portions. 10 minutes prep time, total cook time 40 minutes.
To be blended
1 cm ginger
7 garlic cloves
2 fresh green chilis
2 fresh red chilis
Half cup whole almonds
2 large onions
For the curry
2 tablespoon cooking oil
1 cinnamon stick
2 star anise
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
2 springs fresh curry leaves
2 whole potatoes, cut into 8 pieces
2 tomatoes, cut into 8 pieces
1 whole chicken, cut into small pieces
2 tablespoon curry powder
2 tablespoon chilli powder
500ml of water
Salt to taste
1. In a pot, fry 2 tablespoon cooking oil with 1 cinnamon stick, 2 star anise, 7 cloves, 7 cardamon, 1 teaspoon fennel seeds and 2 springs fresh curry leaves until cinnamon stick opens up. About 2-3 minutes will do, make sure not to burn the fennel seeds.
2. Add in the blended paste and fry until fragrant.
3. Add chicken and fry and combine with the blended paste.
4. Mix in 2 tablespoon curry powder, 2 tablespoon chilli powder and 1 teaspoon of salt.
5. Add the potatoes, tomatoes and 500ml of water. Gently stir and cook covered for 30-40 minutes.
6. Add more salt as needed and add more water if you prefer a more watery consistency. Serve hot with white rice.
ALY'S COOKING TIPS
1. Do not add too much almonds. I have learnt this the hard way! The almonds are a natural thickener that makes the dish naturally creamy and thick. If I had to count, I used about 10-12 pieces of almonds. If you add too much, I promise you that your curry will be grainy like satay sauce lol
2. If you do not have curry powder at hand - DO NOT PANIC. Curry powder is basically a pre-mix of the following spices. And if you do not have ALL of these spices, my best practice is to at least have the coriander, cumin, turmeric and chili powders.
• 2 tbsp coriander
• 2 tbsp cumin
• 2 tbsp turmeric
• 1 tsp black pepper
• 1 tsp cardamon
• 1 tsp chili powder
• 1 tsp dry mustard
• 1 tsp ground ginger