Nariyal Chicken | Hari Ghotra
4.5/5 rating (23 votes)

Nariyal Chicken

Chicken in a Hot Coconut Sauce

  • Heat Hot
  • Serves 4
  • Dietary Info LACTOSE-FREE
  • Prep 10 mins
  • Cook 20 mins
Nariyal Chicken

Chicken in a spicy coconut sauce that's light and creamy yet brimming with the coastal flavours of Southern India.

Hari says

My parents didn't cook dishes with creamy sauces just because they hadn't ever experienced that style of cooking, having come from the Punjab region. Personally, I love South Indian flavours: from sour tamarind, to sweet coconut. All the elements are balanced in wonderful harmony.

This is a bit of a hybrid dish with a base sauce from the north but hosting flavours from the south – my attempt to try to enlighten my mum's world to South Indian flavours without overwhelming her pallet. 

It is one of my personal favourites because it really packs a punch but it is really quick to make and doesn't need much work. Tastes amazing with white fish as well.

  • Ingredients
  • Method
  • 500g chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into bite size chunks
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 2 tsp butter
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 medium onions, blended in a food processor to a grated consistency
  • 200g/½ tin plum tomatoes
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp chilli powder (optional)
  • 2 to 3 green chillies, chopped
  • 200ml coconut cream
  • 1 tsp of garam masala
  • Handful fresh coriander, chopped
  1. Heat oil and butter in a pan and add cumin seeds. When sizzling and aromatic add the onions and fry until a golden colour.
  2. Add the tomatoes, salt, turmeric, chilli powder and fresh chillies. Stir together and leave to cook so the tomatoes break down and you're left with a thick paste.
  3. Pour in the coconut cream and cook gently for a few minutes so the flavours combine. Add the meat and stir to coat with the sauce.
  4. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting and place the lid half on the pan and leave to cook for about 10 minutes until cooked.
  5. Taste the sauce and adjust seasoning if required
  6. Remove from heat and add garam masala and throw in the fresh coriander to serve.

Served with

Just like they do in South India this only requires rice, but I do like to have this with lemon rice as well.

Nutritional information

Typical values* per Serving
Calories133
Fat (g)9.1
of which saturates (g)6.0
Carbohydrates (g)3.1
of which sugars (g)2.6
Fibre (g)0.4
Protein (g)10
Salt (mg)0.69
*Based upon calculated values, supplied by myfitnesspal.com. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated.

This goes well with

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Comments

Comments (29)

  • Bradley Tyler

    Bradley Tyler

    04 November 2016 at 12:19 |
    I'm eating this now for my lunch as I cooked it for dinner last night. Absolutely delicious! And so easy/quick to make, perfect for a mid-week meal. YUM!

    reply

    • Hari Ghotra

      Hari Ghotra

      04 November 2016 at 17:02 |
      Amazing - left over curry for lunch is a god send!! Thanks for sharing

      reply

  • Mixy

    Mixy

    23 April 2016 at 09:40 |
    Woh... I have to try that.... Looks very tasty and less complex to prepare!

    This recipe calls for butter, but many other recipe call for ghee instead. Is there a reason why you would use ghee or butter in a recipe?

    Also, the recipe mentions adding 200ml coconut cream. But in other recipes (like Hari's epic Chicken Korma) the instruction is 400ml coconut milk or 75g of coconut cream block. I understand the coconut cream block to milk conversion. What is the coconut cream (in block/gr) to coconut cream (in ml) conversion?

    Thanks Hari!

    reply

    • Hari Ghotra

      Hari Ghotra

      23 April 2016 at 10:43 |
      Hi Mixy I just like to use thicker coconut cream for this recipe as you get liquid coming from the chicken. If you have coconut block I would use about 100g and then water it down if you need to. Hope this helps. Let me know how it comes out Hari

      reply

  • Barry Barker

    Barry Barker

    10 December 2015 at 18:33 |
    Hari,
    When I cook with chicken I always have to use breast (white) meat because my wife doesn't like thigh meat. Beacause thigh meat is generally fattier than brerast meat, would you make any changes, addition to the recipie to compensate for the slightly drier meat.

    reply

    • Hari Ghotra

      Hari Ghotra

      14 December 2015 at 11:17 |
      Hi Barry Just cook it for less time - 6-10 mins should be more then enough. Let me know what you think of the dish. Thanks Hari

      reply

  • Catherine

    Catherine

    25 August 2015 at 01:48 |
    Hello Hari,
    I tried the Nariyal sauce today with tofu (added it with the onions, so it absorbs a maximum of flavour) and WOW! It was delicious!!
    Thank you for all the great recipes!

    reply

  • Hari Ghotra

    Hari Ghotra

    16 August 2015 at 07:47 |
    Hi Kevin To hear that my recipes are being cooked all the way in New Zealand has certainly made my morning! I'm thrilled that you are enjoying the flavours and dishes over there. In terms on venison mince - I have a great dish called Kofta curry which would be perfect - it's on the site so do have a look. I also nave a meatball starter which would work too. http://www.harighotra.co.uk/search?searchword=kofta&searchphrase=all
    It would be great to see how you get on so do take a pic to send me! Thanks Hari

    reply

  • Kevin

    Kevin

    15 August 2015 at 20:33 |
    Hi Hari

    Thanks for the great website and sharing all of these wonderful recipes. Really enjoying working through them over here in New Zealand. I have hated take away Indian food ever since I visited India some years back. Finding this website has really helped me to recreate some of the flavours I encountered in India.
    This curry was very easy to make and tastes amazing. Both me and the Mrs give it a 10 out of 10.

    Can you recommend a dish that would work well with venison mince or meatballs?
    Thanks
    Kevin.

    reply

  • Nigel

    Nigel

    12 August 2015 at 13:11 |
    Hello Hari,

    Excellent recipe. As you say, quick and easy and full of flavour. Definite winner.

    reply

  • Hari Ghotra

    Hari Ghotra

    11 August 2015 at 12:29 |
    Hi Stuart Thank you that's very kind of you to say. In answer to your question yes you certainly can. I love this dish Thanks Hari

    reply

  • Stuart Hughes

    Stuart Hughes

    10 August 2015 at 12:51 |
    Hi would fresh tomatoes work in the dish? I think your recipes are amazing.

    reply

  • beck

    beck

    03 August 2015 at 20:18 |
    AMAZING! Was a little bit dubious seeing such a short list of ingredients and no garlic or ginger but this was fantastic. Great flavour good kick and quick and easy. Will definitely be making it again.

    reply

  • Sam Robson

    Sam Robson

    20 June 2015 at 09:57 |
    im English living in Thailand , cooking this tonight, I love Indian food, I will add garlic with the onions , because I always do

    reply

  • David

    David

    16 June 2015 at 12:28 |
    Many thanks for your reply and confirming my question,I will cook this soon and let you know,many thanks again Hari, David....

    reply

  • Hari Ghotra

    Hari Ghotra

    16 June 2015 at 10:57 |
    Hi David Yes this one is a bit unusual for Indian food in that it has no ginger or garlic but it is still full of flavour and one of my favourite weeknight dishes. It's really easy to cook after a day at work and tastes just amazing! Give it a go and let me know what you think. Thanks Hari

    reply

  • David

    David

    15 June 2015 at 09:50 |
    Hi Hari, just a question on this recipe,I notice it has no garlic or ginger in the recipe is this correct,as I have always used both when making curries,many thanks...

    reply

  • Hari Ghotra

    Hari Ghotra

    09 June 2015 at 20:18 |
    Hi Catherine This is the one I always tell people to cook on a week night because it's just so quick and easy yet packed full of flavour. So pleased you tried it and loved it! Thanks Hari

    reply

  • Catherine

    Catherine

    09 June 2015 at 20:14 |
    Hi Hari. Made this one tonight and was amazed at how easy yet tasty it was!! Hubby & I both really enjoyed it and will definitely be making it again. Thanks for the recommendation.

    reply

  • gareth crawford

    gareth crawford

    29 May 2015 at 14:40 |
    Yea that's true, I finished it off with a little yogurt also which gave it a slight sour taste, it worked great :)

    reply

  • Hari Ghotra

    Hari Ghotra

    24 May 2015 at 13:56 |
    Hi Garath That's wonderful to hear! This one is really good when it's nice and spicy because the balance with the sweet coconut is awesome! Thanks for letting me know how much you enjoyed it. Cheers Hari

    reply

  • gareth crawford

    gareth crawford

    23 May 2015 at 16:41 |
    I tried this recipe for the first time this evening. Tasted awesome. Normally I am not such a fan of coconut based curries but this was an exception.

    I like quite a bit of spice and I think that is what made me enjoy this coconut curry more than others that I have tried!

    I did add chilli powder and I used 3 dried chilli's in the end because I only realised, that I had no fresh green chilli's when I started to prepare the dish. It was pretty spicy in the end but thats how i like it!

    I will definitely be cooking this one again!

    Cheers!

    reply

  • Hari

    Hari

    22 March 2015 at 08:40 |
    Hi Rhona That's fantastic to hear especially from someone who has enjoyed Indian food for years. I do love this one too. You must try some more and let me know what you think. Thanks Hari

    reply

  • rhona

    rhona

    21 March 2015 at 21:28 |
    hi hari ..have tried indian recipes for years .. i live in scotland ..great takeaways.. but your nariyal chicken beats all of them hands down..10 out of 10..thank you

    reply

  • Andy Barber

    Andy Barber

    18 October 2014 at 17:28 |
    Well, I had high expectations after last night's Masala Prawns; I was not disappointed!! Easy, so tasty, and very more-ish!! The only problem I have is trying to resist the leftovers I have potted up for lunches this week. Oh, and thanks for the tip ref the onions Lisa!
    I don't know which one to cook next, but I know it will be delicious!!

    reply

  • Hari

    Hari

    28 June 2014 at 08:24 |
    Great tip Lisa. I have to admit I do blitz my onions sometimes too - I will add that into the recipe. Glad you enjoyed it. The pics on facebook looked great and made me really hungry!

    reply

  • Lisa Vigorito

    Lisa Vigorito

    27 June 2014 at 18:41 |
    So far, so good! Just did a taste test and it's already better than any other curry I've cooked!

    Quick tip though, definitely invest in a blender - grating onions is more tricky than it sounds!!

    reply

  • Hari

    Hari

    23 June 2014 at 08:53 |
    Hi Hannah. Glad you enjoyed it!

    Yes there is a difference which is mainly to do with the constancy.
    Coconut cream has a higher fat content so is thicker and more creamy and gives a wonderful richness to dishes like this. Coconut milk is not as concentrated and thinner in constancy so not as rich.
    Top tip: If you can't find coconut cream buy a tin of coconut milk and put it in the fridge. The solid cream will separate at the top of the can - just scoop this out and use this.
    There is more info here - http://www.harighotra.co.uk/coconut-cream-milk-and-desiccated/

    reply

  • Hannah

    Hannah

    20 June 2014 at 20:54 |
    Hi Hari this was another yummy curry, hot and spicy. I had coconut cream and milk in the cupboard - is there any difference between the two?

    reply

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Hari Ghotra