Kolhapuri Chicken Rassa

Kolhapuri Rassa is one of my favourite chicken curries. I am a biiiiiiiiiiig fan of spicy, thin curries which you can have just by themselves like soups. You’ll hardly find any Indian meat lover who hasn’t heard of Kolhapur in the context of this city’s incredible chicken and mutton curries. I make this in a slightly different way (meaning I add a lot less oil that Kolhapuris would, but it turns out just as well)

I use…

for the masala:

  • 2 medium sized onions sliced
  • 2 small tomatoes
  • 15-20 cloves of garlic
  • 2 inch piece of ginger
  • a handful of coriander leaves
  • roughly 100 gm of dried coconut cut into pieces

This gives me enough masala to make this curry 2-3 times. Once made, it lasts in the freezer for 1-2 months.

Other ingredients

  • Kolhapuri Kanda masala (I generally have this stocked up as a lot of my family members live in Kolhapur and also annually make this masala. You can easily find it in any stores in Maharashtra. Usually all pickles and chutney brands like Katdare, Rambandhu and a zillion local companies have this.)
  • 1/2 kilo chicken, boiled with salt and turmeric

Here’s what I do.

I chop dried coconut, onions and tomatoes. I then take the garlic,  ginger and a handful of corriander, ready to be added to the masala base.


I then dry roast the coconut just until it starts releasing its natural oils. I then take it off the heat and saute onions in 1 tsp oil till they just start to sweat. I then add tomatoes and saute until the mixture is soft and translucent.


I then grind the sauteed tomato and onion, the coconut, garlic, ginger and coriander in the mixie till a thick puree like consistency is achieved. This masala lasts me 2 make this curry 2-3 times depending on how thin I want my curry to be.

While I am making the masala, I boil chicken with salt and turmeric in the pressure cooker.Once I have the masala ready, I heat 1/2 tsp of oil in a pan and add about 5 tbsp of this thick masala puree and keep stirring it as it boils. If it starts sticking to the bottom of the pan, I add add some  water and let it reduce.


I keep repeating this till the masala is well cooked, about 7-8 minutes. I then add about 2 tbsp of kanda masala and keep stirring, again adding water occasionally.  By now the mixture start bubbling away and thickens, I add just a bit of water to keep it from burning and reduce some more.


I then pour about 200 ml hot water and bring the thin broth to a boil. I then add the chicken along with the water that I boiled it in. I bring the entire mixture to boil 2-3 times. And THAT’S IT!

I made this for tonight’s dinner actually. But since the oh-so-inviting aroma is irresistible and I can’t wait for another 7-8 hours (by when the flavours would have deepened even more), I’m going to eat it like soup. Bon Appetit!



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