As my quest for the amazing curries from South Asia continues, it makes me add another gem of a curry to my Curry Cabana. This delicious, spicy and tangy Mangalorean Chicken Curry originated in the kitchens of the Bunt community from the Southern Part of India and has become quite popular on restaurant menus in South Asia and beyond. The reason? Oh you wouldn’t ask the reason once you have started toasting all those spices with coconut flakes! I can happily hover around that magical aroma, entranced and captivated for a long time.

And then comes the taste. I love curries with coconut milk and tamarind. The balance of sharp sour with the mild, silky sweetness of coconut milk is mind blowing. Traditionally two kinds of chillies are added to Mangalorean Chicken curry, the long red ones for colour and the the small red ones for the heat. Since I was cooking for the entire family and my younger one still can’t tolerate very spicy, so I only used the long ones that added colour and just enough heat. Kashmiri red chillies can be a good substitute for those who don’t like it too hot. You can adjust the number of chillies according to your level of tolerance.

Also I recommend tasting the curry in final stages for the balance of sour and sweet because some people like more sour than sweet and vice versa. You can keep more curry by adding more water or coconut milk, I like mine with medium thick sauce.

As usual I have simplified the cooking process to minimum hassle, because honestly I find the recipes with too many pots, pans, steps and directions very tedious! I toast all the dry spices and coconut flakes together, just keep a strict watch that you don’t burn them.

You can use the same curry to cook seafood and vegetables as well.

Serve it with zeera pulao(cumin rice), plain steamed rice, roti or if available the thin and crispy rice flatbread that traditionally goes with it.


1/2 kg boneless chicken
2 medium onions, sliced
4 tablespoons coconut flakes
6 dried red chillies
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 stick cinnamon
4 cloves
6-7 black pepper corns
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
4 cloves garlic
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt or to taste1 tablespoon tamarind paste or pulp
1 cup coconut milk
4 tablespoons olive oil or ghee

This Is What You Do:

Heat a skillet and dry roast coconut flakes, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, fenugreek seeds, cinnamon, cloves, peppercorn, turmeric and red chillies till they are aromatic.

Remove from heat and combine with garlic cloves, tamarind paste and two tablespoons of coconut milk in a food processor to make a smooth paste. Set aside.

Heat oil in a deep pan. Add onions and fry till light golden, add chicken, salt and 1/2 cup water. Cover and cook till the chicken is half done.

Add the spice paste, 1/2 cup water and half of the coconut milk. Cover and cook on medium low heat till the chicken is done. Add the remaining coconut milk and cook on low heat for another 2-3 minutes.

Serve hot garnished with raw onion rings. Tastes great with rice or roti.

Serves 4

8 Replies to “Mangalorean Chicken Curry”

  1. Hi
    I tried it today , it is quite tasty though a bit hot for us due to usage of cloves pepper n cinnamon ? but still its yummy . Thanks for the recipe

    1. Hey Neelam,
      Good to see you here, my friend 🙂 Glad you liked the curry. It’s traditionally a VERY hot curry, in my recipe the spiciness is sufficiently reduced 😀 But if you still find it hot, reduce the red chillies to half next time 🙂

      1. In fact my mistake , i know my husband does not like hot curries i should have skip it altogether but mainly i cooked it for a family shifted near by and they liked it ?

        1. You are a wonderful neighbour too, I should move somewhere close ? I’m glad your neighbors enjoyed ?
          Thank you for the feedback, dear Neelam.

          1. Oh sure come in my neighbourhood i must enjoy your yummilicious foods ? but you have to come to scotland ☺️

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