Village style chicken kuzhambu/ gravy

Village style chicken kuzhambu is spicy and dense in texture - making it an awesome pair for white rice. You can also try this gravy with roti varieties too, but white rice is the best combo for this dish. The spices like coriander seeds, dry red chillies, black pepper corns, green cardamom, cinnamon stick and sesame seeds are dry roasted till they turn aromatic and little smoky on a medium flame. Then cooled down and ground to a fine paste using a little bit of water.

Meanwhile, the chicken pieces (i prefer chicken wings for this dish though) are marinated with a fat pinch of turmeric powder, red chilli powder and ginger garlic paste. What non-veg dish would go without ginger garlic and turmeric ???!! Guess what - none of them :)

Then, just saute green chillies, bay leaf and onions in right amount of oil for few minutes and add the ground paste with red chilli powder and desired quantity of water. The gravy is allowed to boil on high flame then adding marinated chicken pieces along with some salt. Cook until chicken is done and further simmer it with chopped coriander leaves until you see a sea of oil floating around. I just used a little amount of oil to begin with. Since the chicken wings are used with the skin on, it tends to release more oil and hence you see a lot of oil in the final picture. You can instead use the chicken pieces without skin to be on more healthier side. Do try this recipe for sunday lunch and enjoy !


300 gms of chicken pieces, i have used chicken wings for this recipe. You can use any kind of chicken pieces not necessarily wings.
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp red chilli powder
salt to taste
1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
2 green chillies, slit vertically
2 big onion chopped thinly
1 bay leaf
1 tbsp cooking oil

For roasting and grinding:

4-5 dry red chillies
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp white sesame seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds/jeera
1/2 tsp black pepper corns
1 inch cinnamon stick
1 green cardamom

How to make village style chicken kuzhambu/gravy:

1. Clean the chicken pieces and wash them thoroughly in running water for 5-6 times.

2. To a bowl, add the chicken pieces with ginger garlic paste, a pinch of salt, 1 tsp red chilli powder, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder.

3. Coat the chicken pieces with marination masala and let it sit for 15 minutes in room temperature.

4. Heat a pan and add the ingredients mentioned under "roasting and grinding". Dry roast the ingredients until nice aroma comes.

5. Once the dry roasted ingredients have cooled down, add it to a blender and grind it to a smooth paste by adding water little by little.

6. Heat a kadai or wok with a tbsp of cooking oil. Add bay leaf and slit green chillies. While adding the green chillies, you might need to simmer down the flame as the chillies tend to sputter a lot.

Tip: You can use olive oil or sesame oil or vegetable oil or even butter or clarified butter.

7. Add chopped onions and saute for 3-4 minutes on medium flame or till they turn transparent.

8. Add the ground masala mixture to the pan and stir.

9. Now add half a cup of water and 1 tsp red chilli powder.

Tip: You can add more water too depending on the desired consistency of the gravy.

10. Bring it to boil on high flame.

11. Then add the marinated chicken pieces and salt for the dish. Mix well.

12. Cook it covered for 12 minutes on medium flame or till the chicken gets cooked.

13. Check in between and stir occasionally, if you are adding less water for the gravy. To make sure, the gravy does not get stuck to the bottom of the pan.

14. Then simmer down for 5-6 minutes until the kuzhambu/gravy starts to ooze out oil.  Finally garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

15. I further simmered the gravy to have a thicker version wherein the coriander leaves have almost vanished :D but the aroma just blended nicely to the kuzhambu/gravy :)

16. Serve the village style chicken kuzhambu/gravy with white rice.

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