Maharashtrian Chicken Curry Recipe

Chicken curry
Pinghung Chen / EyeEm / Getty Images
  • 45 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: Serves 4 to 6
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The state of Maharashtra is located in the western region of India, and its capital is Mumbai. The cuisine of Maharashtra spans from mild to spicy, and this curry is made with the trademark coconut milk used in lots of Maharashtrian cooking. 

This recipe calls for rinsing the chicken, soaking the chicken pieces in vinegar and then rinsing again. This technique dates back to the days before refrigeration when people believed the acid would kill any bacteria on the meat. However, some cooks still practice this method to remove any odors the poultry may have developed during shipping and storage.

Like many Indian recipes, this one starts with making a masala. A masala is a mixture of Indian spices often combined with onion then ground into a paste. This paste is then "fried" in oil to enhance all of the seasonings' flavors.

This chicken curry is ideal spooned over rice. Serve with a green salad or a simple vegetable side dish for a complete meal.

What You'll Need

  • 2 1/4 lbs. (1 kg.) chicken pieces of your choice, skin removed
  • 2 tbsp. vinegar
  • 2 large onions, cut into quarters
  • 3 tbsp. coconut powder or freshly grated coconut
  • 1 tbsp. garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp. ginger paste
  • 2 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. garam masala
  • 3 tbsp. vegetable, canola or sunflower oil
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 green chillies, slit lengthwise (optional)
  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch cubes
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped fine

How to Make It

  1. Rinse the pieces of chicken and put into a large plastic bowl. Pour the vinegar over the pieces and mix to ensure all the pieces are well coated. Let sit for 10 minutes and then rinse the chicken under running water. This gets rid of any excessive poultry smell and taste. Set chicken aside for later.
  2. Put the quartered onion, coconut powder, ginger and garlic pastes and powdered spices into a food processor and grind into a smooth paste using very small amounts of water if necessary.
  1. Heat the oil in a deep pan over a medium heat. Add the paste to the hot oil and fry until the oil begins to separate from the masala (spice-onion paste). Stir frequently to prevent the masala from burning. Now add the chicken and fry until pieces turn opaque white, about 8 minutes.
  2. Add coconut milk, green chilies (if using) and potatoes. Season with salt to taste. Stir well.
  3. Cook until the chicken and potatoes are done, about 15 minutes. This dish should have a medium-thick gravy; if it is too thick add a small amount of warm water and cook for a few minutes. If gravy is too thin, boil to thicken.
  4. Add chopped tomatoes and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Turn heat off and gently spoon curry into a serving dish.
  5. Garnish with chopped fresh coriander leaves and serve with rice and a green salad or a simple vegetable side dish.