Tamil Style Chicken Varuval

Spicy chicken curry with Pataks UK

So happy to share my recipe for this chicken varuval! I’ve partnered with Patak’s UK to bring you recipes that are a prevalent part of Indian communities whilst blending in with the range of spice pastes from the brand.

This recipe is one of my favorites; its is so full of flavour with black pepper, fennel and curry leaves. The curry is creamy and thick which coats the chicken cooking the pieces until they are just done. Serve with some plain rice or flaky paratha this makes such a fantastic family meal for the festivities. Make sure to give it a go and hope you all enjoy it!


  1. Heat oil in a heavy bottom non-stick sauce pan over a medium heat and add the cardamom pods along with the crushed fennel seeds. Sizzle for a minute as they start to flavour the oil

  2. Add the sliced onion and fry for 12-14 minutes until it softens & begin to change colour. Now add the garlic along with the green chilli. Fry for a further minute stirring well; it will start to lose its raw flavour

  3. Add the sliced tomato and fry mixing well to soften for 4 minutes. Tip in the Madras Curry paste and cook for a couple of seconds to mix it through.

  4. Now add the chicken and stir well to coat all the pieces in the masala/ spice base. Seal the pieces for 5 minutes stirring to make sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Season to taste and lower the heat and cook the varuval with a lid on for 10 minutes stirring halfway through.

  5. Add half the curry leaves, mix well and continue cooking for further 5 minutes with a lid on. Now stir the chicken and fry for 10 minutes without the lid.

  6. The gravy will begin to thicken and coat the chicken pieces. At this stage add the black pepper, garnish with the remaining curry leaves, coriander and lemon juice. Serve with paratha or rice.

  • Sinead O’Callaghan

    Hi Maunika, thanks so much for the great recipes! I’m going to try the Tamil Style Chicken Varuval this evening. I love the web-site, but for a busy working mum – it would be so handy if you had added the prep and cooking time for each of your recipes!

    • Maunika Gowardhan

      Hello Sinead, Thank you for your kind word. Lovely to hear your enjoying the recipes:) Yes we are continuously looking to improve the website and have made note of that. There is lots more coming on the site site this year so that should be something we are looking to include too! x


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