Nadan Chicken Peralan/ Chicken Coated with Masala


This is actually my mother’s recipe and it is an all time favourite at my home. She says this is the way chicken was prepared in her ancestral home. But in those days onions were not available and they used shallots instead. The use of shallots imparts an authentic flavour to this dish. But in today’s busy world, peeling shallots in large quantity is a tiresome task! In this recipe we use some crushed shallots for marinating chicken and for gravy preparation we use onions.


For marination

  • Chicken -1/2 kg
  • Shallots – 5-8 crushed
  • Ginger – 1/2 inch piece crushed
  • Garlic – 3 crushed
  • Green chillies -2 crushed
  • Curry leaves – a spring
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Coriander powder – 2 heaped tspn
  • Chilly powder – 2 tspn
  • Garam masala powder – 1 tsp
  • Coconut oil – 2 tspn
  • Salt as required

For gravy

  • Onion – 2 sliced
  • Tomato-1 chopped
  • Ginger-garlic paste – 1 tspn
  • Curry leaves – 5 dos
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Freshly crushed pepper – 2 tsp
  • Oil – 2 tblspn preferably coconut oil.
  •  Salt as required


  • Take a pan and keep on a very low flame. Dry roast coriander powder until its raw smell goes and slightly starts changing colour, switch off the flame and add chilly powder and garam masala powder.Mix the powders together.
  • Marinate the chicken pieces with the above masala powders and all the other ingredients mentioned under ‘For marination’. Keep it aside for half an hour
  • Take a heavy bottomed vessel and add oil.
  • Add onions and saute until they turn transparent, then add ginger-garlic paste. Saute until its raw smell goes and the onions turn golden brown. Add turmeric powder.
  • Next add the chopped tomatoes along with salt and curry leaves. Remember we have added salt in the chicken during marination, so add accordingly.Saute until the tomatoes turn mushy and oil starts separating.
  • Add the marinated chicken to the gravy and mix it well. Keep on a medium low flame, water will ooze out from chicken while cooking. If needed, add 1/4 cup water and cook. Keep the vessel covered.
  • Open the lid and check whether chicken is cooked well. It takes about 15 – 20 minutes.
  • Now open the lid and keep on a medium flame and mix well till the gravy reaches a thick consistency.
  • Finally sprinkle freshly ground pepper and mix everything together. For additional taste a drizzle of coconut oil can be added at the end.


  • If you prefer to have more gravy, you can add some thick coconut milk at the end.
  • At the final stage while adding pepper, some crushed cumin can also be added(optional).

Thank you.

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