Chicken Ghee Roast


850 gms Chicken measured after cleaning, cut into med - large size pieces

For marination :

3/4 cup Whisked yogurt 170 gms packet, 1 tsp Chilli powder, 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder, 1 tbsp Lemon juice, 1/2 tbsp Crushed ginger & garlic each, Salt

For masala :

6 Dry red chilli with seeds, 1/2 tsp Black pepper corns, 6 Fenugreek seeds, 4 Cloves, 1/4 tsp Cumin, 1/4 tsp Fennel, 1.5 tbsp Coriander seeds, 1 -1.5 tbsp Crushed garlic, gooseberry size Tamarind soaked in 2-3 tbsp warm water, 1 tbsp Kashmiri chilli powder optional, 2 tsp Jaggery / sugar, 4 tbsp + 2 tsp Ghee, Salt, Curry leaves,


  1. Marinate cleaned chicken pieces with yogurt, chilli powder, turmeric powder. lemon juice, crushed ginger & garlic (1/2 tbsp each) and salt for 1 - 2 hrs or refrigerate overnight.
  2. Heat 2 tsp ghee in a frying pan and add black pepper corns, fenugreek seeds, cloves, cumin, fennel, coriander seeds. Fry in low flame for 2-3 mins. Add crushed garlic (1-1.5 tbsp) and fry for 1-2 mins. Add dry red chilli and fry for a min or till it plumps. Add tamarind pulp. Mix well. Remove from fire and let cool completely.
  3. Add 3-4 tbsp water to the spice mixture and grind this to a fine paste.
  4. Heat 1 tbsp ghee in a wide and deep pan and add curry leaves and marinated chicken pieces, along with the marinade. Mix well. Once the chicken starts to change colour, cover and cook for 20-24 mins. Make sure to check in between and give a stir.
  5. Once the chicken is almost cooked, separate the chicken pieces and gravy and keep aside.
  6. In the same pan, add 3 tbsp ghee. Add curry leaves and ground masala. Fry on lowest flame for 7-8 mins or till the raw smell of the masala goes (refer notes). Once the masala is fried well, add 1 tbsp Kashmiri chilli powder, if using. Fry for 1-2 mins.
  7. Add cooked chicken pieces and mix well. Add gravy, jaggery / sugar mix and bring to boil. Reduce flame to lowest . Cover and cook for 5 mins on low flame. Remove from fire.
  8. Let the curry settle for half an hour for the flavour to settle in.
  9. Serve with Neer Dosa, Ghee Rice, Veg Pulao, Jeera Rice or Plain Rice

Recipe notes :

  1. Make sure the chicken pieces are not cut too small. I happen to use small size chicken pieces and I felt it would be better if it's bigger pieces.
  2. Kashmiri chilli powder is added only to give a bright colour to the gravy, so you can skip it if you dont have it.
  3. I fried the ground masala on the smallest burner to make sure it doesn't get burnt.
  4. You can add more ghee to cook chicken and later on while cooking the masala too. I've seen some recipes using 3/4 cup ghee or so, so you can always add more .