Malabar Style Chicken Varattiyathu

A wonderful dish of onions and chicken in a delicate masala makes chicken varattiyathu a must have side dish.

Malabar Chicken Varattiyathu

Sometimes the simplest of ingredients can make a wonderful dish. Every teaspoon of ingredient you add in your pan can influence the taste and color of your dish in different ways. Similarly, I believe in the inherent goodness of all people. I have been called “idealistic” and also “a complete idiot” by many people. This is because I often argued that every person is good by heart and I believed so. It is those teaspoons of injustice, negativity and unhealthy experiences that tilt the person towards good or bad.

The point I wanted to make is that even with your kids, criticism is good as long as it is healthy and within their understanding and adapting capability. When they do something naughty, something wrong, a parent would admonish them saying ” You are a bad boy/girl”.  But that would only create in them a feeling of being bad rather than make them aware of the reason they were admonished in the first place.  Instead create in them a feeling of understanding, explain the action and its consequences,and tell them “You are a good boy/girl and I love you very much. But what you did today was a bad bad thing to do”. And see if it makes that bit of difference.

Well, today’s dish is a Chicken Varattiyathu – Malabar style. It is a simple dish that can be made regularly at home. It is nothing fancy nor festive. It is plain delicious. A delicate balance of flavors play out well in this Chicken Varattiyathu. It hardly takes much time and does not need constant monitoring either. You can ring up you hubby to get some ” kerala porotta” and then whip this up in a jiffy.


Malabar Style Chicken Varattiyathu

Source: Malabar Vibhavanghal

  • Chicken – 500 g
  • Onions – 2
  • Green Chili – 4 to 5
  • Coriander leaves – 2 sprigs
  • Mint leaves – 1 sprig
  • Curry leaves – 2 sprigs
  • Ginger – 1 small piece
  • Garlic – 6 cloves
  • Salt as needed
  • Tomato –  1 large (150 gm)
  • Garam Masala – 1/2 tsp
  • Turmeric – 1 tsp
  • Red Chili powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Water – 1/2 cup
  • Coconut Oil


  • Slice the onions finely, slit the green chilies and chop all the leaves finely. Slice the tomatoes and crush the ginger and garlic nicely. Keep aside.
  • Take a large pan and heat a little coconut oil in it. Coconut oil is mainly used in Kerala cooking. You can use any other unflavored oil instead. When the oil is hot add the sliced onions, green chilies and all the chopped leaves into the pan and saute well.
  • When the onions are cooked to a nice translucent color and the leaves are wilted through, ad dthe ginger and garlic and saute till a nice aroma fills your room.
  • At this stage add the tomatoes and cook covered till the tomatoes are mushy and oil leaves the sides.
  • Add the chili powder, garam masala powder and the turmeric powder and give a quick turn.
  • Add the chicken pieces now along with salt as needed and stir fry for 5 minutes.
  • Add 1/2 cup water and cook covered for the first 15 minutes on a low flame and then uncovered till all the moisture is absorbed and the gravy coats the chicken pieces.
  • Take off the flame and serve hot with porotta, rice, aapam or puris.





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