Kori Rotti Curry

Kori Rotti Curry

Idli Sambar

Kori Rotti is a very authentic and traditional dish from the Bunt (Tulunadu) community, Mangalore/Udupi region. It is a chicken (kori) dish made with fresh spices and coconut+coconut milk, a thin gravy that is poured over bite-sized rice wafers (rotti) and savored with both hands :):) he he I am kidding, just use 1 hand to eat, that should be enough:). Avoid using spoons and forks..no fun there! But let me warn you, it is a messy deal 🙂 roll your sleeves up before you attack the kori rotti, just like sloppy joes 🙂

My first face to face encounter with Kori Rotti was in 1998 at a wedding of a Nepali neighbor with a Bunt girl. And that’s when I tasted this beautiful dish and never forgot the taste. The preparation of kori rotti curry is more or less like my (coastal) home preparation but the combination of eating it with the rice wafers (rotti) is unique and very very tasty.
Rotti is basically made from rice like dosas but it is paper thin in texture. When you pour that kori curry over it, it soaks in the goodness of the curry and gets soft and soggy. It then gets irresistible 🙂 It is readily available in the stores. My mom was amazed to know that I get it here in USA, while she literally smuggles it out of Udipi whenever my relatives travel or someone from the town visits the place :). So 3 cheers to US of A 🙂

I am a big fan of coconut-based masalas while preparing meat. The flavors are simply exotic and as the meat marinates in the masala, bingo! the flavors hit the spot!

This recipe is shared by my bestie Ranjana Shetty (Her mom’s recipe). And no, she is not related to Shilpa Shetty or Sunil Shetty.. or maybe she is :):) I cannot thank her enough as this one is a keeper and a fantastic tasting kori ghashi (coconut masala curry).


2 lb chicken (6-7 chicken thighs with bones)
To grind Masala:
4-5 Cloves
1 1/2 inch Cinnamon stick
5-6 peppercorns
1 small or 1/2 big onion – thinly sliced
5-6 cloves of garlic
7-10 red dry chillies
2-3 tbsps coriander seeds
1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
6-7 seeds of fenugreek
1 tsp poppy seeds
1 tsp fennel seeds (optional)
3/4th cup of grated cocount
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 marble sized tamarind piece
salt as per taste
1 tsp +1 tbsp coconut oil
To Marinate:
1 1/2 tbsp ginger garlic paste
3/4 tsp turmeric
salt to taste
1 1/2 cup thin coconut milk*
1/2 cup thick coconut milk*
2 tbsp oil/ghee
2 onion sliced


Chop the chicken thighs into big bite size cubes. Marinate it with turmeric powder, ginger-garlic paste, and salt. Keep it aside in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
Heat coconut oil in a frying pan and fry the cloves, cinnamon, and peppercorns for a couple of minutes and transfer to a blender.
Next add the red dry chilies, coriander seeds, cumin seeds and the fenugreek seeds in the same oil. Once fried well you can transfer it to the blender.
Take a1 tbsp coconut oil and this time fry the sliced onions. Once it gets slight brown add the garlic pieces into it, along with the poppy seeds and the fennel seeds. Lastly, add the grated coconut into it and fry just a little for the coconut to turn a little reddish brown.
Put all of these fried items into the blender and add turmeric powder and tamarind into it and add enough water into the blender and grind into a fine paste. Keep aside.
Heat 2 tbsp of coconut oil/ghee into the cooking vessel, add 2 sliced onions and fry well. Add marinated chicken into it.
Fry the chicken for about 5 minutes then add the ground masala into it and let the chicken cook in the masala. You can add a little water to it along with salt to taste.
After 15 minutes, add coconut milk into it and let it boil. Note that the curry should be thin and runny as the rotti should be soaked well in the curry to get the perfect taste.
You can add the seasoning of 1 onion cut into small pieces and fried in ghee to the cooked chicken curry.
Serve hot and enjoy with the crisp rotti’s crushed well.

Full recipe: Kori Rotti Curry

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