Goan Recipes & Cooking

A spicy Indo-European Romance...

Moms Chicken Xacuti (Xacuti Galinha)

My all time favorite chicken curry. Here chicken is cooked in rich spicy coconut gravy with exotic flavors


makes 4 servings



Prep Time

5 hours

Cook Time

1 hour, 30 minutes

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  • 1 whole Chicken, skinned and cut into small pieces about 1 1/4
Marination paste:
  • 1 Garlic, whole
  • 1 Ginger
  • 3 Green chilies
  • 1 1/2 Cilantro, fistful
  • 1 1/2 tsp Salt
Dry spice powder:
  • 18 Cloves
  • 1 1/2 Cinnamon
  • 5 Cardamom
  • 1 1/2 tsp Anise
  • 1 1/2 tsp Poppy seeds (Khas Khas)
  • 1/2 Nutmeg, fresh powdered
  • 1 tbsp Patri (dry flower native to Goa)
  • 3 Star anise
  • 4 tbsp Vegetable oil
  • 4 Onions, medium, chopped
  • 4 1/2 tbsp Coriander powder
  • 1 1/2 cup Coconut, grated
  • 12 Garlic pods, crushed
  • 1 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 3 tsp Red chili powder
  • Handful of Cilantro with stems
  • 1 Tomato, large, chopped
  • 1 Lime, juice
  • 1/2 cup Coconut milk, unsweetened


  • Grind the marination ingredients to a fine paste. Marinate the chicken with the above paste for about an hour
  • Fry the dry paste in little oil for a minute and half, except poppy seeds. Make sure none of the spices burn, otherwise they will turn bitter. Grind the dry spices to a fine powder
  • Add 4 tbsp oil in a medium sized pot and fry half the onions till golden brown. Then add 2 tbsp coriander powder and fry for another minute. Remove from heat and set aside
  • In another pan lightly brown 1 1/2 cup grated coconut. In a blender incorporate the coconut and onion mix (from 3) with the dry spice powder (from 2) and grind the mix to a very fine paste. Ensure that the coconut is completely ground so it is not gritty between fingers
  • To the pot (from 3), add 2 1/2 tbsp oil and fry the remaining onions until golden brown. Add the crushed garlic pods and cook for a minute. To this add turmeric, coriander and chili powder and mix well
  • Immediately add tomato. Roast till tomatoes are softened
  • Add the cut up chicken pieces with half to one cup water and mix all the above ingredients thoroughly
  • Add ground coconut paste (from 4) along with the lime
  • Stir in the 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk, cilantro
  • Cover and cook on low to medium heat until chicken is thoroughly cooked about 30 minutes
  • Serve with Indian flatbread and basmati rice


For best results, prepare all pastes and powder and set aside prior to cooking

You can substitute chicken for lamb. Preperations will be same, but cooking time will vary

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