Chicken Mappas

Chicken Mappas (1)
Chicken Mappas | Traditional Kerala Chicken Curry Made With Coconut Milk. Traditional Kerala Special Chicken Mappas Recipe. Recipe adapted slightly from Mrs.K.M Mathew Cookbook.

We are great fans of the Kappa Chakka Kandhari restaurant situated in Koramangala, Bengaluru. One of our favorite repeat orders here is the duck mappas served with vattayappam. The food by Chef Regi Mathew is phenomenal. My son loves the mappas here.

This is my homestyle version of the mappas but made with chicken as sourcing duck is a little bit difficult in this season. We do get Kuttanadan ducks for a limited period during Christmas time. If you have access to good duck meat, do try this recipe with duck as the fat from the meat beautifully flavours the curry. Chicken works well too.

Here are the things you can buy online for making this chicken mappas
Earthen Kadai/Clay Pot
Heavy Duty Indian Mixie
Small Cast Iron Tadka Kadai / Pan
Single Piece Teak Wood Chopping Board
Cold Pressed Natural Virgin Coconut Oil

Here is the video of how to make chicken mappas

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Chicken Mappas

Traditional Kerala Special Chicken Mappas Recipe. Recipe adapted slightly from Mrs.K.M Mathew Cookbook.

  • Total Time: 60m
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x



For the Chicken Mappas Spice Powder

2 cardamom
4 cloves
2 inch piece cinnamon (cassia)
1/2 of a star anise
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon black pepper powder
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1.5 tablespoon coriander powder

Other Ingredients for Chicken Mappas

3 tablespoon coconut oil
1.5 cups onions, sliced
2 sprigs curry leaves
2 inch piece ginger, julienne
5 cloves garlic, chopped
5 green chillies
1 teaspoon salt
750 grams chicken, bone-in
1 teaspoon vinegar
2 cups thin coconut milk
1 cup thick coconut milk

Tempering Chicken Mappas

1 tablespoon ghee
5 shallots, sliced
2 sprigs curry leaves


First, we shall make a spice powder for the mappas. Take a small chutney jar to grind. Add in a couple of pieces of cardamom. No need to roast the spices before grinding as we will fry them in oil later. Add in some cloves, a small piece of cinnamon, half of a star anise, half a teaspoon of fennel seeds, a teaspoon of black pepper powder, a teaspoon of turmeric powder and three tablespoons of coriander powder. Grind everything to a fine powder. We add the powders along with whole spices so it grinds evenly to a fine texture. Grind everything to a really fine powder. Set aside.

I have used a clay pot for making the chicken mappas. Heat coconut oil in the pan. Let the oil become hot. Add in the onions. I have sliced the onions thin for this recipe. Add in the curry leaves, Add in the ginger. Ginger has been cut into thin strips also called julienne, add in the chopped garlic, the green chillies and the salt. Adjust the number of green chillies according to your taste. There is no red chilli powder in this recipe. So green chillies are what is used to spice up the curry. So adjust the chillies according to your taste. Saute till the onions are light brown in colour. It will take anywhere between 5-6 minutes. Keep sauteing so it browns evenly.

Once the onions are slightly brown, add in the prepared spice powder to the pan. Add all of the prepared spice powder. Saute the spice powder so the hot oil nicely coats them and it becomes very aromatic. Saute for a few seconds.

Add in the chicken at this stage. Bone in chicken is preferred while making Indian style curries as the bone has a lot of flavour. Mix well to combine so the chicken is well coated in the masala. Cook for about a couple of minutes.

Add in a little vinegar at this stage. I have used plain regular vinegar for this recipe. Add in the thin coconut milk also called the second pressed coconut milk. I have used homemade coconut milk for this recipe. Home made fresh coconut milk flavour cannot be beat for this recipe. But, if you are hard pressed for time, you can dilute the canned coconut milk and use it in this recipe. It’s ok. Mix everything well and cover the pan with a lid. Let the chicken slowly cook on a low flame for about thirty minutes. Cooking the chicken on a slow flame brings out the flavours well.

The chicken should be well cooked after 30 minutes. Add in the first pressed thick coconut milk and let the curry simmer for a couple of minutes. Do not cook for long after adding the thick coconut milk.

While the curry is simmering, make a tempering as follows.
Heat ghee or coconut oil in a small  tempering kadai. Add in the sliced shallots and the curry leaves. Saute for a couple of minutes till the shallots are golden brown.

Add the tempering to the curry and mix well. Our delicious chicken mappas is now ready.


Potatoes can be added along with the chicken for a variation.

  • Author: Suguna Vinodh
  • Prep Time: 15m
  • Cook Time: 45m

Keywords: chicken mappas

6 thoughts on “Chicken Mappas”

  1. Lucy Arumugam

    This is really great! It came out very similar to my husband’s favorite chicken at the local South Indian restaurant. I added the potatoes for some added texture. Also used some dried green chilies I made from the garden this summer. I didn’t cut the chicken, used whole thighs- but next time I will cut it. Also I think I may add some shredded coconut at the request of the husband. Can’t wait to make it again! Highly recommend.

  2. Hi Suguna – this was fantastic. Made it twice last week. Wanted to check if this had to be made with mutton, how will the recipe change? I feel like the taste will be great even with mutton. Please let me know. Thank you!

    1. Hi Sowmya. For mutton, pre-cooking the mutton till its half done with salt and little turmeric is preferred.
      Once the mutton is cooked, you can follow the same recipe as is. Instead of water, you can use the stock used for cooking mutton.

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