Side Dish

Pepper Chicken Fry (Chicken Kurumulakittu Porichathu)

Black pepper (Piper Nigrum / Kurumulaku) is one of costly and prestigious spices of ancient times. A lot more affordable these days, but cherished none the less. Black Pepper is native to India, especially from Kerala and played an important role in Indian history. It got the name black-gold (Karutha Ponnu) from the British. When we specifically talk about black pepper from different regions in Kerala, I would say the black pepper from my native Thalassery is famous for its pungency and aroma :-).

Black pepper has quite lots of medicinal qualities and has been used in different Ayurvedic medicines. It is a very good source of vitamin C & K, iron and manganese. This can be included in your diet especially when you have cold, cough or digestion problems.

Out of 3 types of peppers (black, white and green) black pepper is widely used in India. I use all forms of pepper such as crushed, ground or corns in my cooking. Make the pepper powder or crushed pepper corns as and when required to ensure best flavour and also make sure that pepper corns are stored in air-tight containers.

I think, the best result comes when pepper is used with meat or mushroom. Pepper chicken fry is shallow fried by marinating the chicken with pepper and other spices. So this is healthier compared to deep fried chicken and as per my non-vegetarian guests, it is really yummy ;-). So do try it out.

Pepper Chicken Fry/Kurumulaku Chicken


  • Chicken : 1kg
  • Pepper : 4 teaspoon [If you have pepper powder only, 2 teaspoon would be sufficient]
  • Chilli powder : 2 teaspoon
  • Turmeric powder : 1/2 teaspoon
  • Salt : 1 teaspoon (for taste)
  • Curry leaves : 15 leaves
  • Ginger garlic paste : 1/2 teaspoon
  • Water : 1/4 cup
  • Cumin seed : 1 teaspoon [Cumin powder : 1/2 teaspoon]
  • Oil : 5 tablespoon


Wash chicken thoroughly and cut into small pieces, which helps to properly marinate. Grind pepper and cumin seed in a mixer and add to chicken. If you have pepper powder & cumin powder add it directly. Add turmeric, chilli powder, ginger garlic paste, water and salt. Mix well using your hand and keep for 10 minutes.

In a pressure cooker add marinated chicken (from step1) and take out from the flame/heat after the first whistle. Open once the pressure is over. This will have some water. Let it be ;). If you use normal vessel (and not pressure cooker), cook chicken (from step1) in a low flame/heat.

Use a frying pan (non-stick) on heat and move the mix from step2 in to it. Once it starts drying out, add oil. You can add some more curry leaves if you like. Stir the mixture every 5 minutes. When it is completely dried out, make the flame/heat low and stir every 1-2 minutes using wooden spatula (Note: If it isn’t wood, chicken pieces will easily break). Take out once it is fully fried and a bit crispy as shown in picture.

You can use it as a starter, with mint chutney.

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I love cooking and trying out various recipes, and also to come up with ways to achieve good results in reasonable time and effort ? All of the recipes I post here were tried out by me at least 2-3 times (if not a few dozen times) before I was happy with a simple method which gives me good results. Hope you enjoy making these dishes. Would be thrilled if you let me know in the comments how your experiment went. If you have recipe requests for any Malabar dishes, please contact me and I’ll make every effort to get the recipe, try it out and post it here.

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