Kozhi Nirachathu (Stuffed Chicken)

This variation on pot roast chicken from Reza Mahammad and Faiza is stuffed with crunchy lentils, sweet onions and locally grown spices
By Reza Mahammad
Kozhi Nirachathu (Stuffed Chicken)
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Effort: medium



  • 1 (about 1.2kg) chicken

For the Fried Onion Mixture:

  • 2 tbsp clarified butter, (ghee)
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 4 green chillies, shredded
  • 12 curry leaves

For the Stuffing:

  • about 2 tbsp fried onions
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp raisins
  • 2 tbsp cashew nuts
  • 2 tbsp gram lentils, boiled and drained
  • 1 egg, hard-boiled and shelled

For the Sauce:

  • about 4 tbsp fried onions
  • 1 tbsp mild chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp ground fennel seeds
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 3cm piece of ginger, shredded
  • 2 fat cloves garlic, chopped
  • 300 ml water

For the Garnish:

  • 2 tbsp chopped coriander
  • 1 tbsp raisins
  • 1 tbsp cashew nuts, halved

Tips and Suggestions

Gram lentils are also called chana dal.


1. Clean the chicken and set aside while making the stuffing.

2. Heat the ghee and oil in a saucepan and fry the onions, chillies and curry leaves for around 20 minutes, until the onions have turned a lovely dark brown. Take one third of the onions and use it for the stuffing, saving the remainder for the sauce.

3. For the stuffing: add the chilli powder, coriander powder, garam masala and turmeric powder to the small portion of fried onions. Stir and fry for a minute before adding the coriander leaves, raisins, cashew nuts and lentils. Leave the stuffing to cool before using.

4. Fill the stuffing into the chicken's cavity and push the hard-boiled egg into the centre. Leave the chicken on one side while you make the sauce.

5. For the sauce: add the chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric, fennel seed powder and garam masala to the larger portion of the fried onion mixture and cook, stirring for a minute or so to take the raw taste away from the spices. Stir in the ginger and garlic while still on the heat and pour in the water.

6. Bring the sauce to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Place the chicken in the same pan, cover with a tight-fitting lid and simmer for about an hour until the chicken is tender, turning the bird once or twice during cooking.

7. Serve the whole chicken hot, sprinkled with coriander leaves, raisins and cashew nuts.

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