Friday, 18 January 2008

Chettinad Kozhi varuval (Chettinad chicken fry)

I am a convert, ever since I watched Hugh’s chicken run on Channel 4. The program highlighted the pitiable conditions of the intensively reared chicken (popularly called broiler chicken in India) Vs the better conditions of free range chicken. You can find more about it here. The site has a facility where you can find free range chicken near the place you live in the UK. This program got me thinking hard and long. Now that is something that doesn’t happen often, I mean the thinking bit. If truffles are cultivated and available in plenty would they demand the respect they have now. As food becomes cheap we loose respect for it and abuse it. To turn this around, I have chosen to buy free range chicken and decrease the frequency of chicken consumption. What I do is buy one whole chicken and get the hubby to cut it (he can be a real sweetheart sometimes) and store it in different bags in the freezer by cuts – bony bits, fleshy bits and the thighs. The bony bits for kuzhambu, fleshy bits for varuval and the thighs go under the grill.

Let me give my brain its much needed rest and stop rambling about my new found enthusiasm for free range chicken and get to the recipe. This Chettinad chicken varuval is Mrs Mano’s recipe. She posts her recipes here. I have tried many of her recipes with stunning results and wouldn’t shy away from recommending them. Alright before you loose patience here goes the recipe.... (ah finally)


  • Chicken – 750 gms


  • Garlic – 4 pods
  • Ginger – 1 inch
  • Fennel – 1 Tbsp
  • Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
  • Coriander powder – 1tsp
  • Chilli powder – 1 Tbsp
  • Pepper – 1 Tbsp
  • Lemon juice – 1 Tbsp
  • Yogurt – 1 Tbsp
  • Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
  • Salt as required

Frying 1

  • Onion - 1 chopped
  • Tomato – 1 chopped
  • Ginger-Garlic paste – 1½ Tbsp

Frying 2

  • Onion – ½ sliced
  • Curry leaves – 1 twig
  • Red chillies – 3
  • Pepper powder – 1 tsp


Grind together all the ingredients under ‘Grind’ to a paste. Marinate the chicken with this paste for a couple of hours. Heat oil in a pan and fry the onions. When the onions are soft add the ginger-garlic paste and then the tomatoes. Fry until the tomatoes are soft and the oil comes out. To this add the chicken with very little water and cook until done and the water is evaporated. In another pan heat some oil and fry the red chillies, curry leaves and the sliced onions. When almost done add the pepper powder to the onion and mix it well. Add the fried onion to the cooked chicken and give it a stir. Vola there you have a lip smacking chicken dish. Although the list of ingredients looks exhausting, it does not take a lot of time to make this. So please don’t let the long list put you off from trying the recipe and of course you can adjust the spice level.


Anonymous said...

I am going to try this chicken recipe. It looks easy and tasty.Thanks for posting.


Anonymous said...

Have a look at this, exact same recipe,

Anonymous said...

Ada Ada Ada... came out reely reely well! Thanks!

bhashna said...

I really loved the way you explained,it cam eout really well !!!

bhashna said...

its really written veryw ell.IT came out really wonderful.Thanks a lot

Bengaluru Bijli said...

I tried this chicken last night. Turned out great!! Thanks!

Bengaluru Bijli said...

I tried this chicken last night. Turned out great. Thanks!