The ubiquitous Travancore chicken has multiple versions, but this one is the best
When talking about fried chicken, the first image that immediately poops up is that from the famous fast-food chains. But, what if you were told that there already exists the desi fried chicken that will both, look and taste delicious? From the very own state of mesmerizing backwaters and land of spices comes the fried chicken which is locally known as Kozhi Porichathu or Thattukada Chicken Fry. Yes, it is a common delicacy in Kerala found as street food. With just the usage of the spices from the shelves of the home kitchen, a riot-filled chicken is ready to be served.
The local legend of Thattukada Chicken Fry
Well, if one was to trace the journey of fried chicken, it will take you directly to the southern states of America. The delicacy of fried chicken has its precedents in Scottish and West African cuisine, where it has been prepared for thousands of years. However, the first recipe for fried chicken can be found in the 1747 book by English cook Hannah Glasse.
As it was in the earlier times, as the traders coming from the West and Arab countries made their first stop at the Southern coast of India gave birth to unique cuisines. Though the fried chicken of the Scottish and African countries was bland or with just salt, in Travancore the fried chicken got a twist. Making use of the regional local spices, the chicken was dipped in spices first and then fried.
According to local legends, this chicken dish gets its name after a British visitor who happens to have shared the recipe with a local restaurant in the early 1940s. Soon the fried chicken came to be known as Kozhi Porichathu but became a local favourite through the street food stalls, called Thattukada in Malayali. Therefore, this fried chicken became famous by the name Thattukada Fried Chicken for Malayalis worship their street food.
• 1kg Chicken
• 14 baby Onions
• 4 Green chillies
• 10 Garlic cloves
• ½ Ginger
• 3 sprigs Curry leaves
• 1 tsp Black pepper
• 1 tsp Fennel seeds
• 4 Dry red chillies
• 1 tbsp Red chilli powder
• 1 tsp Turmeric powder
• 1 ½ tbsp Rice flour
• 1 tbsp Corn flour
• 1 tbsp Vinegar
• 1 Egg
• Oil to deep fry
• Wash and keep the chicken aside.
• Grind the dry red chillies and keep them aside. Separately grind the baby onions, green chillies, garlic, ginger, curry leaves, black pepper, and fennel seed into a fine paste. Set aside.
• In a big bowl add chicken, the masala paste, dry red chillies, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, vinegar, rice flour, corn flour, salt, and egg. Combine all so that the masala covers every piece of chicken. Cover and let it marinate for 30-40 minutes.
• In a pan add oil and deep fry each piece of marinated chicken. Remove and serve.
With a serving of chutney, lemon juice, appam, and Thattukada Fried Chicken a scrumptious meal is complete. This is a much healthier version of the processed food chain fried chicken and can be made with variations in masalas.