Spicy Malay Chicken Curry

Malay chicken curry  (Kari Ayam) is one of the best chicken curries in the world. Simple, soupy, and redolent of the flavors from South East Asia. I was inspired to take the Malay chicken curry recipe and add a whole lot of spices to make it a spicy chicken curry. This recipe has almost every spice in the cookbook and is incredibly addictive. I served it with some buttered corn rice and a fruit salad. The result was amazing!


  • Prep time – 15 minutes
  • Cook time – 35 minutes


  • Chicken Thighs (Cut into medium sized pieces) – 700 g
  • Red Onion (Finely Chopped) – 1 cup
  • Canned Crushed or Diced Tomatoes – 400g
  • Ginger (Finely Chopped) – 2 tbsp
  • Garlic (Finely Chopped) – 2 tsp
  • Brown sugar – 2 tsp
  • Lemon Juice – 1 tbsp
  • Whole Coriander Seeds – 1.5 tsp
  • Crushed Red Pepper Flakes – 2 tsp
    • Use lesser if you want it less spicy
  • Whole Fennel Seeds – 4 tsp
  • Cumin Powder – 1.5 tsp
  • Turmeric Powder – 1 tsp
  • Black Pepper Powder – 1/2 tsp
    • Use lesser if you want it less spicy
  • Cardamom – 15 pods
  • Cinnamon Powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Garam Masala – 1 tbsp
  • Oil – 4 tbsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Coriander Leaves for Garnish


  1. Using a grinder, grind the coriander seeds, red pepper flakes, fennel seeds, cumin powder, turmeric powder, black pepper powder, cardamom, cinnamon powder, and garam masala. It needs to be a fine powder. Set aside
  2. Heat the oil in a deep dish pot. Add the onions and ginger and saute for 7 minutes
  3. Add the ground spice mixture and mix for 3 minutes
  4. Add the tomatoes and mix well. Then bring the gravy to a boil
  5. Add the chicken pieces and mix it well with the gravy. Turn the heat down to medium-low, then cover and cook for 15 minutes
  6. After 15 minutes, add the garlic, brown sugar, lemon juice and salt. Mix for a minute until everything is well combined
  7. Cover and cook for 10 minutes
  8. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve warm with rotis or rice 🙂



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