Ceylonese Style Chicken Curry

ImageFirstly, I apologize for the unappealing picture. You see, as soon as I finished cooking the curry, I just scooped up as much curry as possible on my plate before I devoured every bit of it. And I also had second helpings. Only once my tummy was full, I realized I didn’t take a photograph of the curry. Oopss! So, hurriedly, scooped up whatever curry that was left onto a plate and this is the picture you get. Most of the potatoes and bigger chicken pieces were already gone. Maybe I’ll update this post another time with a better picture. But here is the recipe for one of my favourite chicken curry – the ceylonese style!

It’s the perfect curry for rice or for dunking in your “roti”. It’s yum, creamy and spicy all at the same time. And it’s great for dinner parties as there will be more than enough curry to go around. Or maybe not…


  • 1 whole chicken cut into 12~16 pieces
  • Handful of ginger bashed in a pestle & mortar (if you don’t have pestle & mortar, fret not, just fine grate the ginger) – save all the ginger juices
  • 2~3┬ácinnamon sticks
  • 4~5 star anise
  • 250 ml coconut milk
  • 4~5 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1~2 soft tomato diced
  • 1 whole garlic chopped fine
  • 1 large onion sliced
  • 2~3 large potatoes skinned and cut into quarters
  • 1~2 chili halved and seeds removed
  • 4~5 curry leaves


  1. Use the ginger juices and ginger bits to coat the chicken in a bowl and set aside
  2. Toast the cinnamon sticks and star anise in pot with some oil. Once the aroma is released, add in the onions and garlic. Stirring constantly to avoid the garlic to over burn.
  3. Once the onion has caramelized, add in the chili, tomato and 2 cups of water. Add in the curry powder and chili powder and stir in till it becomes a thick paste
  4. Add the chicken together with the ginger and all. Also add in the potatoes. Stir in the curry paste all around the meat and then close the lid to let the chicken start cooking
  5. Once the chicken is almost cooked, add in the coconut milk and stir in the curry.
  6. Let the curry boil till the potatoes are cooked through. Check for salt and add the cumin powder. If needed, add more curry powder or if too thick, add some water. You can adjust this on your own discretion.
  7. At the end, add in the curry leaves and you are ready to serve the curry. I usually let the curry cook for about 30mins on the stove. And the last 10mins, I let it simmer with medium heat with the lid off and hood on. What happens is that the moisture starts to escape from the curry and slowly thickening the gravy. In the end, you will end up with only 3/4 liquid from what you started with.

*This should serve at least 5~6 person