Free Press Journal

6 must try dishes of Chettinad cuisine


India is a vast country, with a wide variety of cuisines from different states and regions within the states. I would like to introduce you to the Chettinad cuisine which hails from the southern state of Tamil Nadu, though the food from this state is predominantly vegetarian due the majority of Tamil Brahmins.

On the other hand the Chettinad food is influenced by the Chettiar community which makes uses of non-vegetarian elements too. This cuisine is a fiery, hot, and pungent and packs a punch; but it is also flavorsome and is sure to let the spices and food play with your taste buds and make for a heavenly experience. We bring to you some of the well known dishes of the marvelous and delectable cuisine from down south, the fiery and flavorful cuisine which is Chettinad.

Chettinad Chicken

The Chettinad cuisine would be incomplete without this essential dish which is the Chettinad Chicken. A perfect blend of spices integrated with the chicken. Popular for its use of spice and technique which sets it apart from other chicken dishes in the country. The balance of flavor and spice plays an integral role of this dish which have won over many hearts. The spices are freshly ground and this brings out all elements of the dish. A must try while stepping into the world of Chettinad cuisine.

Spicy Chettinad Chicken Picture Credits:

Spicy Chettinad Chicken
Picture Credits:

Meen Varuval

Meen Varuval or the Chettinad Fish Fry is a dish which uses surmai or fish filets, with a unique masala blend which is used to marinate and pan fry the fish. The spices are employed in a very delectable way. The masala used is fresh, rohu fish too is used at times. A fish dish you should not miss.

Crispy Meen Varuval Picture Credits:

Crispy Meen Varuval
Picture Credits:

Palikattu Chettionadu

This is a vegetarian based dish which is very appetizing. The ingredients used are cottage cheese (paneer) in gravy of mustard scenes, urad dal, curry leaves, tomatoes, onions and a freshly prepared Chettinad paste made with a blend of spices.

Palikattu Chettionadu Picture Credits: Flicker

Palikattu Chettionadu
Picture Credits: Flicker

Eral Kuzhambu

This is a prawn curry dish infused generously with spices with more flavor and reasonable heat (in terms of spice). Prawns marinated in a masala blend. The prawns transformed into firm and succulent wonders. Surely worth sampling.

Eral Kuzhambu Picture Credits:

Eral Kuzhambu
Picture Credits:

Pepper Chicken

This is another popular chicken dish in which pepper plays a pivotal role. It is dry and greasy uses other spices judiciously along with chili powder. Fresh black pepper corns are crushed at the end to enhance and uplift the dish. A tad bit spicy but so tantalizing and it engages your senses.

Lip smacking Pepper chicken Picture Credits: Youtube

Lip smacking Pepper chicken
Picture Credits: Youtube

Nandu Varuval

This is a crab based dish from the Chettinad region , where the crab is boiled and cooked first in salt and turmeric water and then later removed and cleaned and added with other ingredients which compromise ginger garlic paste , onions, tomatoes, coriander and many more elements. The end result is a beautiful crab. Well balanced in flavor and aroma with a firm texture and irresistible.

Delicious Nandu Veraval Picture Credits: Youtube

Delicious Nandu Veraval
Picture Credits: Youtube