Outside my college in Thiruvananthapuram, there was a street vendor who would sell delicious Poricha Kozhi (chicken fry). I can still remember the aroma of the chicken wafting into the classrooms, tempting us students no end as we attended lectures or took our exams. Not surprisingly, Poricha Kozhi with chapathi was a popular after-college snack for us.

Our KCK Chicken Fry inevitably reminds me of those days. Inspired by the street food of Southern Kerala, its predominant flavours are crushed garlic and fennel. Cook it in coconut oil to get that special flavour and eat it with chapatis or as is.

  • Serves


  • Cook Time


    Plus 3-4 hours to marinate


  • 1/2 chicken, cut into 8 pieces
  • 2 tbsp Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp rice flour
  • 1 tsp Guntur chilli powder
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp pepper powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 cups coconut oil
  • 10 garlic cloves, crushed with skin
  • Juice of 1 lemon

For Garam Masala

  • 5 cloves
  • 5 cardamoms
  • 1 1-inch cinnamon stick
  • 1 tsp fennel


  1. Marinate chicken with lemon juice, salt, turmeric powder and ginger-garlic paste. Rest for 1 hour.
  2. Roast and powder the ingredients for garam masala.
  3. To the marinating chicken, add Guntur chilli powder, Kashmir chilli powder, garam masala, pepper powder and let it rest for another 2 hours.
  4. When you are ready to fry the chicken, heat coconut oil in a deep pan or kadai. In the meantime, add crushed garlic and fennel to the marinated chicken and mix well.
  5. Fry the chicken pieces on medium-high heat until done. This should take 8-10 minutes.
  6. Take the chicken out and drain on an absorbent towel. Chicken fry is ready to be served.
Regi Mathew

Regi Mathew

Regi Mathew, co-owner and culinary director of Kappa Chakka Kandhari in Chennai and Bengaluru, is Scroll Food’s Chef of the Month for September. His culinary career, which began with the Taj Group of Hotels, has taken him to several countries, where he has learnt many cuisines. After 25 years in the F&B industry, he decided to closely explore the cuisine of his home state, Kerala. For three years, he travelled through the state, researching its food, and working with 265 housewives and 70 toddy shops, some of whom are now part of the restaurant’s kitchen. He has won several accolades in his career, including being adjudged the Chef of the Year at the Times Food Awards, Chennai, in 2018.

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