Try Chef Mohan’s Chettinad-Style Mutton Sukka, Recipe Inside
Image Credit: Mutton Sukka

Take a closer look at the southern part of India, and you’ll realise that there is a lot more to its culinary treasures than the much talked-about dosas, idlis, and vadas. Several parts of the region are well-known for their rich, meaty fare, more than their vegetarian delicacies. In fact, within each state too, you’d find many variations in the cuisines. Take the Chettinad cuisine of Tamil Nadu, for instance.  

The complexity of flavours due to the use of certain spices - like kalpasi, star anise, fennel seeds, and others - is the secret behind the delicious taste of each of the dishes of this cuisine. They have a balanced mix of vegetarian and non-vegetarian delicacies. Chettinad Chicken is one of the most popular dishes from that spread. However, there is another delightful bite that one cannot miss. We’re talking about Mutton Sukka.  

Made with fresh goat or lamb meat, the Chettinad masala powder is ground and used for marinating the tender mutton pieces. With javitri, cloves and kalpasi added to the marination, the mutton is cooked in sesame oil and results in a flavourful dry meat dish, perfect as a side for biryani, ghee rice and more. Chef Mohan Singh - Head Chef with Chattynadu, a South Indian restaurant chain in Gurugram - shares a lip-smacking recipe for Mutton Sukka for you to try at home.  


    500 gm mutton 

    3 cup water 

    2 sliced thick onion 

    1 sliced and slit green chilli 

    1 sliced tomato 

    ½ tsp urad dal 

    1-inch cinnamon 

    4 cloves 

    5 green cardamoms 

    1 star anise 

    A handful of chopped curry leaves 

    2 tsp red chilli powder 

    ½ tbsp coriander powder 

    ½ tsp powdered cumin 

    1 tsp garam masala powder 

    ½ tsp powdered turmeric 

    Salt, as required 

    1½ tbsp sunflower oil 

    1 dash powdered spice black pepper 

For marination: 

    5 peeled garlic cloves 

    100 gms peeled shallots (small onions) 

    2-inch ginger 

    2 sliced slit green chilli 

    1 tsp fennel seeds 

    ½ cup water 


    After removing the mutton fat, soak the mutton chunks in some lukewarm water with a pinch of turmeric and salt.  

    Then drain the excess water. In the meantime, mix all the whole spices and grind them together in a blender.  

    Marinate the mutton pieces in this for 1 to 1½ hours. 

    Put a pan on medium flame and add water.  

    Once the water starts boiling, add the marinated mutton pieces and boil until half-cooked.  

    Add red chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, garam masala powder, and salt. 

    Cook until the mutton pieces are tender, and the water has almost evaporated. Keep aside.  

    Heat oil in a different pan. Fry the dal until it turns golden.  

    Add cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and star anise. Fry for a minute or two. 

    Add the onions and green chillies. Fry until the onions turn golden brown.  

    Add the tomatoes and curry leaves. Cook for another 2 minutes and add the mutton pieces. 

    Now, add pepper powder and increase the flame to high.  

    Cook until oil starts to separate and the mixture becomes dry.  

    Transfer it to a serving dish and serve.