- Submitted by Dahlia
(Kozhi Kurma, White Chicken Curry, Chicken Korma, Vankozhi Korma)
South Indian Chicken Kurma or Chettinad Kozhi Kurma is another gravy recipe that is different from the usual chicken curry (kuzhambu). Chicken Kurma is usually more creamy, milder and has a pale color as compared to the regular chicken curries that have a bright reddish color. This is made in many parts of South India, including Andhra, Chettinad region of Tamil Nadu and Kerala. It is slightly different but quite similar to the North Indian Chicken Korma which I will share some other time.
The main taste of the Creamy Chicken Kurma comes from the coconut-cashew paste that is added to the curry. To get that beautiful whitish color of the gravy, there should be NO TURMERIC and NO RED CHILLI POWDER in the curry. Instead of the tomatoes, curd is used here. If needed you could add 1 tomato but not more than that as it will change the color. The main spice comes from the green chilies and hence add them generously.
In the traditional style of cooking, the chicken is cooked for about 30 minutes in just the kurma masala paste made with cashews and coconut. The final curry is unbeleivably tasty. I have added a few additional ingredients like some garam masala powder and curry leaves at the end but its totally optional. I have also tried making this with turkey meat and the Turkey Kurma also turned out awesome. Do try out this tasty curry that goes well with all tiffin varieties.
Recipe for Chicken Kurma
Preparation Time : 15 minutes
Cooking Time : 40 minutes
Serves : 4
- Chicken - 500 gms (about 1 lb, cut into pieces)
- Onion - 2(chopped)
- Tomato - 1 (optional)
- Curd - 1/2 cup
- Bay leaf - 1
- Cloves - 2
- Cinnamon stick- 1
- Oil - 2 tbsp
- Salt - to taste
- Garam Masala - 1/2 tsp
- Curry Leaves - 1 sprig
- Coriander Leaves - for garnish
For Kurma Masala
- Grated Coconut - 1 cup
- Poppy Seeds (Kuskus) - 2 tsp
- Cashews - 5 - 7
- Roasted Gram (Pottukadalai, Dalia) - 1 tbsp
- Green chilies - 10 - 14
- Fennel seeds - 2 tsp
- Coriander Powder - 1 tsp or Coriander Seeds - 2 tsp
- Cardamom - 2 cloves
- Ginger - 1" piece
- Garlic cloves - 10 cloves
* Roasted Gram Dal is not shown in the picture below. Also, I added coriander powder instead of coriander seeds.
- Grind together graed coconut, poppy seeds, cashews, green chillies, fennel seeds, cardamom, coriander powder, ginger, garlic and roasted gram dal with enough water to a smooth paste. Keep it aside.
- Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan. Add the bay leaf, cloves and cinnamon stick.
- Add chopped onions and fry them till they are translucent. Next add the ground paste and cook for 5 minutes till the raw smell vanishes.
- Add the chicken pieces and saute for 2 minutes.
- Next add chopped tomato, curd and salt to it. Mix together.
- Add 1.5 cups of water. Cover and cook till the chicken is almost done.
- At this stage add the garam masala powder and curry leaves. Check for salt and let the kurma simmer for 5 minutes.
- Garnish with chopped cilantro. Chicken kurma is ready to be served.
Detailed Steps to make Chicken Kurma
Soak poppy seeds and cashew nuts in 1/2 cup warm water for 10 minutes for easy grinding. Take it in a mixie jar along with green chillies, fennel seeds, cardamom, coriander powder, ginger, garlic, roasted gram dal and coconut.
Grind it to a smooth paste with enough water and keep it aside.
Heat some oil (preferably coconut oil or groundnut oil) in a heavy bottomed pan. Add the bay leaf, cloves and cinnamon stick to the hot oil.
Add chopped onions and saute until it becomes translucent. We don't want to brown it.
Next add the ground kurma masala paste and cook for 5 minutes till the raw smell vanishes. I have used broiler chicken today, so I add the masala first. If I use country chicken, I would add the chicken first, saute it and then add the masala.
Next add the chicken pieces and saute for few minutes.
Next add chopped tomato, curd and salt. Since I forgot to add coriander seeds while making the masala, I added some coriander powder at this stage. Mix everything together.
Add 1.5 cups of water. Cover and cook for about 25 minutes till the chicken is almost done. You can see oil floating on top.
At this stage add little garam masala powder and some fresh curry leaves. Let the kurma simmer for 5 minutes.
Garnish with chopped cilantro. Creamy chicken kurma is ready to be served.
Serving Chicken Kurma
- Both Chicken Kurma or Turkey Kurma goes very well with chapatti, idli, dosa, parotta, aapam and idiyappam.
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