Total Time
Prep 5 mins
Cook 40 mins

I love these tender chicken pieces in fragrant coconut curry gravy. When served with hot coconut rice and fried anchovies, it's called Nasi Lemak. (Check out my recipe for the rice). I'd like to think this is lower in fat than those restaurant ones. Eat the leftover with crusty French bread. Yum...

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. First, dry fry the dessicated coconut with turmeric, ground ginger, garlic powder, chilli flakes, salt and pepper until lightly browned (you can also toast it in the oven at 300°F for 5-10mins but you have to watch it VERY carefully as it burns quickly; you may need to stir once or twice); set aside.
  2. Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan.
  3. Once hot, turn heat down to medium hot and saute onion, garlic, chopped chilli, ginger and lemongrass for 2 minutes.
  4. Stir in curry powder, mix well for another minute.
  5. Stir in chilli paste, stir fry until well-combined.
  6. Add curry leaves, stir fry until fragrant (about 1-2 minutes).
  7. Add about 1/2 - 1 cup of water and coconut milk.
  8. Simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  9. Add the chicken pieces and let cook over low heat for approximately 20 minutes, adding more water if you find it too dry.
  10. Add the evaporated milk to the curry, stir well.
  11. Add the vegetables and simmer for another 10 minutes.
  12. You may add some salt and pepper if desired (i usually add a good dash of black pepper).
  13. Finally, stir in the dessicated coconut (the mixture should be quite thick).
  14. Serve over hot coconut rice (nasi lemak), garnished with sliced cucumber.
Most Helpful

Great curry...but not that spicy. I did make a couple of changes to the recipe though, i left the frozen vegetables out, and i used 2 stalks instead of 1 stalk of lemongrass. I also left out the dessicated coconut. But the spices come together very well, and the aroma was just to die for, but it was nothing compared to the experience of the first taste of this curry. Would make this again. Thanks heaps! (pick your chef)

KitchenManiac December 11, 2003

This was amazing!! It was our first attempt at anything like this, and we loved it. We did not have all of the ingredients (we were missing curry leaves and red chilies), but it was still wonderful. We served with white basmati rice, and my DH ate until he was stuffed! We will definitely make this again. Thanks WaterMelon - this recipe's a keeper.

Kohtzy August 07, 2009

We loved this curry, and so did many people at my children's school; I made it first for an Asian potluck (my son studied Malaysia and gave a great report), and then brought it again the following week for a teacher's appreciation potluck. I also did not have lemon grass or curry leaves, and the first time which was mainly for kids, I left out the chili paste, and they loved it. For the second one it was spicier and the adults loved it. One teacher said, "This has all of the right spices for curry -- really, I mean it." He could tell it was more than just curry powder. Thank you for a great recipe.

Marimomof3 May 09, 2009