Ghee Rice And Chicken Curry in Roasted Coconut Gravy / NeyChoor With Thenga Varatharacha Chicken Curry

Days are getting brighter and longer.  I am looking forward for summer.  Lots of yard work is pending and its rainy.  So its hard to get things done.  Meantime I am growing seedlings indoor under my grow light.   Hoping for a good gardening year.

On lazy weekends, I go with some simple one pot meals, or a carb with protein combo meal.  One of such lunch options my family loves is Ghee rice with Kerala Style Chicken Curry in Roasted Coconut gravy.  It pairs well the side of some fresh Raita.  To make things easier, I marinate the Chicken and roast the coconut with spices the day before.  I prepare the ghee rice in pressure cooker.  Hope you will try this combo.  Do tag me on instagram @FlavzCorner.

Prep Time:10 minsCook Time: 20 mins

Ghee Rice


To fry

1 - medium size red onion thinly sliced

2 tbsp - cashew pieces

1 tbsp - raisins (optional)

pinch of salt

pinch of sugar

4 tbsp - ghee

For the rice

2 cups - Basmati rice

3 1/2 cups - water

salt to taste

Whole spices

4 - green cardamom pods

6 - cloves

2 inch - cinnamon piece

1 - bay leaf

small piece of star anise


  • Wash the basmati rice well and drain.  No need to soak the rice.
  • In a pressure cooker, add 4 tbsp of ghee,  Fry the cashews till golden light brown and remove it to a bowl.  If using raisins, fry them till they puff up on low heat and remove.  Next fry the sliced onion with a pinch of salt and sugar till golden brown.  Remove the fried onions to a bowl.
  • In the same pressure cooker with the left over ghee, add the whole spices and cook on low heat till a good aroma comes.  Add the drained Basmati rice to the pressure cooker and sauté for 30 seconds.  Add 3 1/2 cups water and salt to taste.  Make sure the you taste the salt a bit more in the water.  This will help the rice absorb the right amount of salt and makes the ghee rice taste better.  Let the water come to a slight boil.  Cover the lid of the pressure cooker with the weight on.  Cook on medium heat till one whistle blows.  Turn off the flame immediately.  Let the pressure subside completely and let it rest for another 20 minutes.  After 20 minutes, open the lid and fluff the rice with a fork and transfer it to a big bowl.  
  • Mix the fried onions, nuts and raisins with the rice. Cover it with an aluminum foil till ready to serve.

Prep Time:30 minsWaiting Time:30 minsCook Time: 30 mins

Chicken Curry

Ingredients To Marinate

2 lbs - chicken with bone pieces

1/2 tsp - turmeric powder

1 tsp - Kashmiri Chili powder

1/2 tsp - hot Chili powder

1 tsp - Coriander powder

1/2 tsp - Garam masala

1/2 tsp - pepper powder

1 tsp - salt

To Roast

1 cup - grated fresh/frozen coconut

2 - dry chili

1 - small piece cinnamon

4 - cloves

2 - green cardamom

Small piece of star anise

1/2 tsp - Coriander powder

1/2 tsp - Kashmiri chili powder

For the gravy

1 - medium size red onion thinly sliced

5 - shallots sliced crushed

1 inch - ginger crushed

8 big cloves - garlic

1 - medium size well ripe tomato chopped

2 - 4 - sprigs of fresh curry leaves

3  tbsp - coconut oil


2 - Shallots thinly sliced

1/2 tsp - mustard seeds

1 - dry red chili

1 sprig - fresh curry leaves

1/4 tsp - pepper powder

1/4 tsp - garam masala

 1 tbsp - coconut oil


  • Marinate chicken pieces with the ingredients listed under 'To Marinate' and refrigerate it for 30 minutes to 1 hr.
  • In a non stick or cast iron pan, dry roast the coconut with whole spices and dry chili till the coconut is light golden brown.  Add the chili & coriander powder and roast till the raw smell goes away.  Make sure to maintain low to medium heat during roasting.  Let the mix cool.  Grind the mix to a thick smooth paste using 1/2 - 1 cup of water.
  • In a cast iron pan or dutch oven, add 3 tbsp of coconut oil.  Add the sliced red onions, shallots and some salt and cook till it is translucent.  Add the crushed ginger and garlic and cook till everything is golden brown color.  Add the marinated chicken pieces and some curry leaves.  Sauté on medium to high heat for at least 2-3 minutes.  Cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes.  After 10 minutes, add the chopped tomatoes and mix well.  Add the coconut paste to the chicken and add additional 1 - 2 cups of water and mix well.  Adjust the salt and cover and cook on medium heat till the gravy thickens.  Adjust the salt per your taste and turn off the flame.
  • In a small sauce pan, splutter mustard seeds in 1 tbsp of coconut oil.  Add sliced shallots, dry chili, garam masala and pepper powder and fry till golden brown.  Turn off the flame and add the curry leaves.
  • Add the prepared topping/garnish to the chicken curry and close the lid.  Let it sit for 10 minutes to infuse all the flavors on the chicken before serving.

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