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Kerala Fried Chicken


For the fried chicken:

2 cups buttermilk

10 garlic cloves

1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled

6 whole serrano (or 3 large jalapeño) peppers, seeded if desired

1 bunch fresh cilantro

1 bunch fresh mint

2 tablespoons kosher salt

8 boneless skin-on chicken thighs (about 3 pounds)

4 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted

Garnish: Mango drizzle (recipe follows)

For the mango drizzle:

½ cup mango pulp (kesar or alphonso variety; find at your local Indian grocer)

4 Thai green chiles

2 garlic cloves

¼ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar


  1. Prepare the chicken: In a blender, puree buttermilk, garlic, ginger, peppers, cilantro, mint, and salt until smooth. Place the chicken in a large glass dish or bowl. Pour the buttermilk puree over the chicken and toss to coat. Refrigerate for 24 hours.
  2. Make the mango drizzle: Combine all ingredients in a blender  and puree. Keep in refrigerator until ready to use.
  3. Fry the chicken: Fill a large (12-inch) cast-iron skillet with ⅓ inch oil and gently heat to 350 degrees. Set a wire rack on top of a rimmed baking sheet and set aside.
  4. While the oil is heating, remove the chicken from the buttermilk puree, gently shake off excess, and dredge each piece in flour.
  5. Place the chicken in the skillet, skin side down; at this point, the oil should come halfway up the pan. Cook chicken until it turns golden brown, 4 minutes per side.
  6. Drain the chicken on the rack and drizzle with melted coconut oil. Garnish with mango drizzle.
Note: The chicken marinates for 24 hours, so plan accordingly.
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