28th September 2023

Chicken Xacuti

Chicken Xacuti

Chicken Xacuti is a robust spiced coconut curry that is definately one of the most popular curries in Goa. It is so popular that it is served from breakfast to midnight. The gravy is also used to top the anytime meal Ros-Omeltte – an omlette doused with the gravy – a Goan Street Food.

This recipe for Chicken Xacuti is how it is done traditionally. So the making will take some time. Wait – don’t go away – It is worth the effort !

Serves: 6 to 8 Persons

Prep. Time: 30 to 60 Mins

Cooking Time: 45 to 50 Minsd


[ Standard Measure : 1 cup = 250 ml ]

  • Whole Chicken (chopped small) – 1 kg
  • For the Marinade:
    • Light Green Chillies – 4
    • Green Corriander – a small bunch / ½ cup
    • Ginger – 1 inch
    • Garlic – 12 cloves
    • Turmeric Powder – ½ tsp.
  • For the Xacuti Masala Paste:
    • Dry Red Chillies [Bedgi] – 8
    • Corriander Seeds – 1 ½ tbsp.
    • Cloves – 14 to 16
    • Cinnamon – 1 ½ inch
    • Green Cardamom – 2
    • Black Pepper Corns – ½ tsp.
    • Mace – 1 full flower
    • Star Anise (remove seeds) – 3 petals
    • Fennel Seeds – 1 tsp.
    • Poppy Seeds – 1 tsp
    • Nutmeg – ¼
    • Tamarind – a small marble sized ball
  • Coconut (grated) – 1 medium sized
  • Onion (sliced) – 1 ½ big
  • Onion (cubed) – 1 ½ big
  • Potatoes (peeled, cubed, soaked in water) – 2 to 3 medium (optional)
  • Chicken Stock Cube – 1 (optional)
  • Corriander Leaves (chopped) – for garnish
  • Lime – 1 big
  • Ghee – 3 tbsp.
  • Oil – 2 tbsp.
  • Salt – 1 ½ tsp. Or to taste

Part 1: Marination of the Chicken:

Step 1:     Wash and drain the chicken. Grind the ingredients listed under marinade to a fine paste using a tbsp. of water.

Step 2:     Marinate the chicken with 1 ½ tsp. salt, juice of the lime and the green marinade and leave aside for least 1 hour.

Preparation of Chicken Xacuti

Part 2: Preparation of the Xacuti Masala Paste:

Step 3:     Heat 1 tbsp. oil in a pan and fry the sliced onion till light golden on medium heat. Then add the grated coconut and sauté on low heat till light golden. Transfer to a plate.

Preparation of Chicken Xacuti
Preparation of Chicken Xacuti

Step 4:     Heat 1 tbsp. oil in the same pan and roast each spice listed under the Spices for masala, one by one, for a few seconds on low heat till it gives out a nice aroma (be careful not to burn the spices, roast the poppy seeds last) and transfer to the plate with the onion-coconut. Allow it to cool.

Preparation of Chicken Xacuti
Preparation of Chicken Xacuti

Step 5:     When cooled, grind the onion-coconut and the ingredients for the Xacuti Masala, using a little water, to a smooth paste and keep aside.

Part 3: Get the Xacuti Ready:

Step 6:     Heat the 3 tbsp. ghee in a large vessel and sauté the cubed onion till translucent on medium heat.

Step 7:     Add the marinated chicken and sauté till the colour changes a bit and the juices are released.

Step 8:     Now drain and add the potatoes and 400 ml hot water. Crumble and add the stock cube. Cover and cook for 25 minutes on medium heat.

Preparation of Chicken Xacuti

Step 9:     Open the lid and add the ground masala paste (see note below) and cook further for another 15 minutes on medium low heat. Later, check for salt and add if required. Garnish with corriander.

Preparation of Chicken Xacuti
Preparation of Chicken Xacuti

Serve with hot rice, onion-tomato salad and lime or binge with pao (bread).


  • If after making the xacuti, you feel it is too spicy to your taste, you can add about 100 ml coconut milk to make it milder.

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