Kerala Chicken Fry (Ularthiyathu)

For those nights when you want some authentic tasting South Indian food, but you don’t feel like adding in a ton of ingredients, this Kerala Chicken Fry (Ularthiyathu) is perfect. What really makes this dish taste authentic and nostalgic is the use of good coconut oil; it’s just not the same dish without it 🙂

I hope you enjoy making this and, as always, if you decide to re-create it, I’d love to see how it turns out for you. Tag me on social @thefoodiecutie on InstagramFacebook, or Twitter 🙂


  • Chicken, boneless or thighs, 2 lbs, cut into 2-inch chunks
  • Ginger-Garlic Paste, 2 tbsp (mince or blend 5 garlic cloves and 1 inch piece of ginger if you don’t have paste or follow my recipe here
  • Coriander Powder, 2 tbsp
  • Red Chili Powder, 1 tbsp
  • White Vinegar, 1 tbsp
  • Salt, 1 tbsp
  • Curry Leaves, 2 sprigs or 10-12 leaves
  • Coconut Oil, 2 tbsp


To prep the chicken, wash it with fresh lemon juice and drain well then pat dry. We want to reduce as much moisture as possible because chicken naturally has a lot of water content in it.

Cut the chicken into 1-2 inch chunks if using boneless. If using thighs, cut the meatiest portion of the thigh, leaving a little bit of meat on the bone.

Now, in a mixing bowl, add in the prepped chicken and mix with all of the remaining ingredients along with half the amount of coconut oil. Cover and let this marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour or overnight.

In a frying pan on medium-high, heat the remaining coconut oil. When the oil is hot, carefully add in the marinated chicken, mix, then cover for about 5 minutes. After about 5 minutes, you will see a lot of the natural water come out of the chicken. Fry the chicken until the liquid is just about gone and the chicken forms a light golden brown color. A  subtle gravy coating should form on the chicken. Done!

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