Sri Lankan Chicken Curry

Another gorgeous recipe from my new cookbook Sri Lankan Flavours! I cooked this recently as part of a Sri Lankan dinner, where we had many dishes from this part of the world. With its slightly spicy trait, it fitted perfectly to fresh made rotti and naan bread. Rotti is a typical Sri Lankan flatbread made with fresh coconut. The recipe for this should follow soon on my blog. 🙂


Since we had many other dishes for our Sri Lankan dinner, we had some left over of this curry. Our pleasure was huge when we warmed it up the next day to enjoy this wonderful mix of flavors once again.



  • 8 organic chicken drumsticks
  • ½ teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1 heaped tablespoon Sri Lanka curry mixture
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 big onion, finely chopped
  • 5 curry leaves (I used the dried ones)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 cardamom pods
  • chopped white part (only) of 1 lemongrass
  • 1 chilli, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons crushed ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 3 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
  • 300 ml coconut milk
  • coriander leaves, as preferred



Combine in a bowl chilli powder, curry powder, turmeric and salt. Wash the chicken drums, dry them with a paper towel and give them to the prepared spice mixture. Make sure the spices distribute evenly over the meat and leave everything covered to set for 1 hour.

With a sharp knife make a cross on the bottom of each tomato and put them in a bowl. Pour boiling water over them and let them stand in it for 30 seconds. Discard the water and peel the skin of the tomatoes, which will already start coming off because of the hot water. Chop the tomatoes in small cubes.

Heat oil in a pan until high heat and add chopped onions, curry leaves, cinnamon, cardamom, lemongrass, chilli, ginger and garlic and fry for 3-4 minutes or until golden brown. Add tomatoes and cook for another 5-10 minutes. At the end, add the chicken and pepper, and sauté for another 10 minutes.

Add the coconut milk and bring to boil. Simmer for 20 minutes on low to medium heat, or until the chicken is cooked.

Before serving, sprinkle with chopped coriander leaves.




Recipe adapted from Sri Lankan Flavours by Channa Dassanayaka.

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