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Chicken Xacuti – The story of Vandana Parulkar

Goa has been on the bucket list of every college goer. The moment you land in the city, you are hit by aromas of Goan cuisine. The Goan cuisine that has made its way to popular imagination is the xacuti, pronounced sha-koo-ti. Xacutii is a complex curry that can be eaten with protein or vegetables of your choice. It is a versatile curry that every household makes and every place claims to have the authentic version of it. While we do not make claims of authenticity, we do vouch for the silky curry, the perfectly cooked chicken and the burst of flavours that still makes our mouth water. And, here’s the catch, we found this perfect curry in the city of Bangalore!

Vandana Parulkar hails from Goa and is a repository of Goan cuisine and cooking. A resident of Bangalore, she invited us to document her xacuti recipe and taste it as well. We spoke about how immensely commercialized this particular recipe has become where every shop and every restaurant is selling their version of it. However, her recipe has been documented carefully from her mother and reproduced in her household quite often. She has even created a dry version of this xacuti and sent it to her son in Australia who misses and craves for home food. Such is the spread of this popular recipe.

The aspect that stood out for us is the detailed and methodical manner in which she carried out every step of the recipe. The precision and confidence with which every step was executed is only testimony to the years of experience she has in cooking in general and the iconic xacuti in particular.

Finally, it was time to taste the much awaited xacuti. Aunty had added chicken to hers and the soft perfectly cooked chicken was juicy to bite into. Along with the silken curry and the whole wheat pav, this was one of the best meals we have had in a long time. The curry rests on a delicate balance of heat from the pepper, the sweetness and flavour from coconut. The coconut and chilli combination along with other ingredients make this dish stand out and leaves the taker wanting for more.

Now, let us learn how you can make this at home:


Chicken 1 KG

Onion 2 cups

Chopped Garlic  2 cloves

Coriander – a handful

Grated Coconut 2 Cups

Coconut Milk 4 cups

Salt to taste


Ginger 1

Red Chillies 4

Green Chillies 4

1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder

2 pieces cinnamon sticks

2 teaspoon of poppy seeds

1/2 star anise


1. Create a paste with coriander, green chillies, ginger, garlic, pepper and turmeric powder.

2. Marinate the chicken with this paste for 15-20 minutes.

3. Heat a pan and add oil. Fry onions and garlic in this till they are brown. Add cinnamon, cloves,poppy,mace,red chillies and fry them together for some time.

4. Add Coconut and turmeric powder to this. Mix well

5. Make a paste of this mixture and keep aside.

6. In a separate pan, heat oil, fry some chopped onions and add the marinated chicken.

7. Grind some ginger and green chillies and add to the chicken. Let it boil for some time.

8. Add the paste of the masala in this pan and mix well.

9. At the end, add coconut milk and let it boil for a while.

10. Your chicken Xacuti is now ready! Serve hot with buns, rice or Roti!

If you liked this recipe, leave your valuable comments below and do tell us if you try this out at home!


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