Adarsh’s Chicken 65 Curry

This sticky, spicy chicken curry is deliciously sweet and packs just the right amount of heat. It is to be scooped up with warm, chewy naan, then licked off of fingers.

curry2 Adarshs Chicken 65 Curry

Also, it has a very special place in my heart, for two reasons. First, because it constitutes one of the two dinners my boyfriend Adarsh has ever made for me, and second, because I’m not sure it exists outside of his family kitchen. If you ask him, he will call it Chicken 65. But if you then google “Chicken 65″, you will find plenty of recipes bearing that name, but none that are even remotely close to this particular dish… hmm. Considering it stars ketchup as its secret ingredient, I am forced to question its authenticity as a traditional Indian curry. But it is delicious, regardless of whether or not it is regularly eaten off of banana leaves in the kitchens of the East.

Your first step is to hunt down some curry leaves. Their flavour is irreplaceable in this dish – a bit nutty, warm, and citrusy. Used a lot in South Indian cooking, they have nothing to do with “curry powder” which is a blend of spices.

curry3 Adarshs Chicken 65 Curry

Start by browning the chicken in a heavy skillet – make sure the oil is good and hot and the chicken has been patted dry before you put it in the pan. Don’t flip it until it releases easily – if it is sticking, leave it – it will tear if you try and turn it before it is ready. Next, cook the onions gently over low heat for about 10 minutes to coax out the sweetness. Then add the spices to the pan to saute before the liquid is added. These three steps have a big flavour impact.

As far as curries go, the ingredient list is very short. Which makes it a great curry for beginners, if you can track down some curry leaves at an Indian grocer. I served mine with naan (improvised with dough I had made from the basic Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day recipe) and a vegetable yogurt curry, with eggplant and tomatoes.

curry1 Adarshs Chicken 65 Curry

So here is Adarsh’s recipe for his family Chicken 65, made yesterday in honour of his lovely sister Archana’s birthday. Happy birthday, Achu!

Adarsh’s Chicken 65 Curry

  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/3 cup dried curry leaves (use fresh leaves instead, if you can find them)
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth

1. Heat oil in a heavy skillet (I use cast iron) over medium-high heat. Pat chicken thighs with paper towel to dry before adding to skillet. Brown on both sides, flipping only once. Set aside.

2. Reduce heat to medium-low and add chopped onions to skillet. Cook for 10 minutes, until soft and golden. Add garlic and continue cooking for 2 minutes. Add cayenne and curry leaves, and saute for 1 minute. Return chicken to skillet, and add ketchup and chicken broth. Simmer uncovered for 20 minutes or more, until chicken is cooked and tender, and sauce has thickened.

 

Leave a Reply

(*) Required, Your email will not be published

37 Comments

  1. Elyse

    March 20, 2009 10:08 pm - Reply

    Wow, this looks so delicious. I love curry dishes. This one looks particularly good. And, I love that it’s one of the special dishes that your boyfriend makes for you. Mmm, I can’t wait to make this!

  2. Elyse

    March 20, 2009 2:08 pm - Reply

    Wow, this looks so delicious. I love curry dishes. This one looks particularly good. And, I love that it’s one of the special dishes that your boyfriend makes for you. Mmm, I can’t wait to make this!

  3. Archana

    March 21, 2009 5:51 am - Reply

    Awww :D You are too sweet Jenn! Thankyou sooo much!! :D
    We are having Chicken 65 for dinner tonight and will be thinking of you and Adarsh! :)
    Love you both!! :-*

  4. Archana

    March 20, 2009 9:51 pm - Reply

    Awww :D You are too sweet Jenn! Thankyou sooo much!! :D
    We are having Chicken 65 for dinner tonight and will be thinking of you and Adarsh! :)
    Love you both!! :-*

  5. Sophie

    March 21, 2009 1:24 pm - Reply

    Simple yet so delicious!! yum yum :)!!!

  6. Sophie

    March 21, 2009 5:24 am - Reply

    Simple yet so delicious!! yum yum :)!!!

  7. Kevin

    March 21, 2009 5:26 pm - Reply

    That chicken curry looks really good!

  8. Kevin

    March 21, 2009 9:26 am - Reply

    That chicken curry looks really good!

  9. nicola

    March 22, 2009 2:21 am - Reply

    i really want to try this!

  10. nicola

    March 21, 2009 6:21 pm - Reply

    i really want to try this!

  11. James Fowlkes

    April 13, 2009 6:53 pm - Reply

    Dear Foodess or anyone who has tried this,

    Should I cook the chicken with skin on or removed? Thanks!

  12. James Fowlkes

    April 13, 2009 10:53 am - Reply

    Dear Foodess or anyone who has tried this,

    Should I cook the chicken with skin on or removed? Thanks!

  13. foodess

    April 13, 2009 11:11 pm - Reply

    Hi James – I remove the skin before cooking, but it’s really your preference. The skin adds flavour, but gets a bit soggy as it simmers.

  14. foodess

    April 13, 2009 3:11 pm - Reply

    Hi James – I remove the skin before cooking, but it’s really your preference. The skin adds flavour, but gets a bit soggy as it simmers.

  15. Peter

    May 22, 2009 9:57 am - Reply

    There is obviously a lot to know about this. I think you made some good points in Features also.

  16. Peter

    May 22, 2009 1:57 am - Reply

    There is obviously a lot to know about this. I think you made some good points in Features also.

  17. Laura

    June 21, 2009 5:58 am - Reply

    It may help people find the leaves if you spell them “kari”. It sounds the same, but I think that’s the correct spelling for stores here.

  18. Laura

    June 20, 2009 9:58 pm - Reply

    It may help people find the leaves if you spell them “kari”. It sounds the same, but I think that’s the correct spelling for stores here.

  19. khalil

    July 14, 2009 3:10 pm - Reply

    wow, by just seeing the pic. feel like hungry again and feel the chichken curry linger in my mouth. 5 star for the dish (that not even try yet, but will try in future), like curry as we (Malaysian) like it so much.

  20. khalil

    July 14, 2009 7:10 am - Reply

    wow, by just seeing the pic. feel like hungry again and feel the chichken curry linger in my mouth. 5 star for the dish (that not even try yet, but will try in future), like curry as we (Malaysian) like it so much.

  21. Ute Baum

    May 4, 2010 3:18 pm - Reply

    What a first class meal, easy to follow instructions, straight forward to prepare not to mention utterly delicious, all the family liked it, thanks very much.

  22. Ute Baum

    May 4, 2010 7:18 am - Reply

    What a first class meal, easy to follow instructions, straight forward to prepare not to mention utterly delicious, all the family liked it, thanks very much.

  23. Honey

    July 2, 2010 12:48 am - Reply

    this looks wonderful.
    I would never think of making chicken this way.
    great job!!!

  24. Honey

    July 1, 2010 4:48 pm - Reply

    this looks wonderful.
    I would never think of making chicken this way.
    great job!!!

  25. lucy

    August 16, 2010 4:03 pm - Reply

    I can’t wait to try this chicken curry. Its definately something i’ll be cooking at the weekend! Lucy

    • foodess

      August 16, 2010 11:54 am - Reply

      Let me know how it turns out, Lucy!

  26. foodess

    August 16, 2010 7:54 pm - Reply

    Let me know how it turns out, Lucy!

  27. Padma [email protected]

    May 10, 2011 6:07 am - Reply

    hi this is padma i like you chicken

    • Anonymous

      May 12, 2011 7:57 pm - Reply

      Hi Padma, glad you like :-)

  28. mere

    May 23, 2011 5:49 am - Reply

    wow! i just wana hang out with whomever cooked this up and with fresh naan…awesome!! 

  29. lusciouskiwi

    January 4, 2014 6:48 pm - Reply

    This has been on my list to try for a while.  I finally found some fresh curry leaves and made it tonight.  At first, I wasn’t sure I liked it.  The flavor was unlike anything I had tasted before even though I have eaten lots of things from this part of the world.  It took a few tastes and then I understood…it was delicious.