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Pepper chicken

In India, we were frequent visitors to Nandini restaurant. This is the place where we became huge fans of Andhra food. We loved the normal vegetarian thali, which according to us, was a comfort food. The other thing we absolutely loved there was their chicken dishes. Since hubby is not a great fan of chicken with bones, we would always pick up some boneless dish. After a while, our staple chicken order was for an extremely flavorful pepper chicken. It used to be very hot and would have a strong curry leaves flavor to it.

Now after two years in US, I have forgotten how it is supposed to look, but the taste still lingers on my tongue. Every time I buy chicken, hubby’s request comes for this dish. So this time, I thought of recreating this dish. Since I wanted a strong pepper and curry leaves flavor to it, I kept it very simple. It came out to be absolutely delicious. Try this at least once to know what I mean.If you have Kashmiri red chili powder in hand, use it for a bright color. Increase the amount of heat if you can tolerate more. It tastes great when savored with lemon juice sprinkled on it.

1/4 kg boneless chicken
A pinch turmeric
1 tbl spn thick yogurt
1 tea spn ginger paste
1 tea spn garlic paste
1/2 tea spn chili powder
1 tea spn pepper powder
15-20 curry leaves

Apply ginger-garlic paste, chili powder, 1/2 tea spn pepper powder, salt, yogurt to chicken and leave it aside for about 2-3hrs.
Heat oil in a pan. When the oil is steaming hot, add the marinated chicken. Cook for 5-6mins from both sides (do not add any extra water). When the chicken is almost half done, add 1/2 tea spn pepper powder, curry leaves (cut into two), cover and cook till chicken is completely done.Serve hot with lemon wedges.

Serves : 2
Preparation time : 15mins

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{ 54 comments… add one }

  • Arun Shanbhag January 4, 2008, 10:14 pm

    This should go well with a cold beer

    Recipe appears straightforward. Should try it soon.

    PS. our kitchen is out of commission for two more months – so no trying exotic foods! (unless it is is microwaveable!) :-((

    Thanks for sharing

  • Maya January 4, 2008, 10:15 pm

    Yumm Chicken Shilpa..Am a big fan of Nandini restaurant in b’lore too…Love their Biryani’s…My mom makes a similar dish, but with loads of garlic n crushed pepper in it…Will post it sometime soon..

  • Lisette January 5, 2008, 1:26 am

    This is absolutely YUMMY. I marinate it overnight in the fridge and the chicken bits just melt in your mouth!!!

  • Purnima January 5, 2008, 6:39 am

    Shilpa..this sure is spicy n much needed during winter time! Wd surely like to give it a try…tks for posting! best rgds.

  • sagari January 5, 2008, 1:51 pm

    yummy ans easy chicken recipe shilpa

  • Sig January 5, 2008, 3:02 pm

    OMG, we were big Nandhini fans in Bangalore, are you talking about the same Nandhini? I LOVED their chilli chicken, the one with ground green chillies and a very thick gravy with chili seeds floating, that was soooooo good. I have tried various recipes to get that taste, but I could never recreate it at home… This pepper chicken looks super yummy, I don’t remember if I ever had this there… but I am going to try it at home…

    Shilpa: Sig, I was thinking of you when I posted this, I thought u will like this since it is very spicy. Yes, I am talking about Nandini in Bangalore. Whenever I go to India, I am surely going there again. Its so good, I miss it so much.

    • Kirti November 21, 2011, 4:32 am

      Hey Shilpa,

      Do you know the recipe to make nandini style chilli chicken. I have not found a similar recipe anywhere on the net. Please let me know if you know it. Will be of great help.


  • Jeena January 5, 2008, 3:14 pm

    Hey Shilpa this chicken looks amazing. :-)

  • Madhumita January 6, 2008, 1:32 am

    Shilpa … recently discovered your site and I’ve already tried a couple recipes from here! Your food is really really good – I’ve also blog rolled you … hope this is ok?

    Shilpa: Thanks Madhumita for blogrolling me.

  • Deeba January 6, 2008, 3:09 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    I agree this is a great recipe & a MUST TRY at least once. I made one quite similar a few weeks ago, but it was on the bone! Great flavours!

  • Meeta January 6, 2008, 1:10 pm

    Lovely, hot and mouthwatering! I am craving some right now!

  • musy January 6, 2008, 5:10 pm

    Dear Shilpa,

    A very happy new year to you and your family too. Good to find another Nandini fan :). The pper chicken sounds great, will adapt this recipe to mushrooms and am sure it will still taste yummy :).

  • brilynn January 7, 2008, 8:58 pm

    This looks great!

    Welcome to the Daring Bakers and good luck with this month’s challenge!

  • pelicano January 8, 2008, 5:21 am

    Nice job re-creating a dish from memory! That hotel is really lovely BTW.

  • Valen January 8, 2008, 11:45 pm

    Tried this for dinner yesterday; DELICIOUS
    I must say that I left out 1/2 tsp pepper as I thought it may have been too spicy, but no hassle- could have used it
    Lovely with lemon squeezed

  • vimmi January 9, 2008, 9:01 am

    Will try this on fridays. Friday evenings are reserved for non veg items like these. I make a similar green chili chicken but this week it will be this yummy dish

  • Sig January 10, 2008, 12:30 am

    Shilpa, I made this last night… Didn’t have any curry leaves at home
    :( but still tasted super yummy. Siv’s birthday today, so I had made a big feast last night, we had this as the appetizer, with some cold beer… So good..

  • Tiba Prabhu January 10, 2008, 1:18 am

    Hi Shilpa

    Excellent recipe. I tried it and it was really super.

    Tks and keep up the posts. I like your blog sooooo much.

    Tiba Prabhu

  • sk January 10, 2008, 4:32 pm

    Tried this yesterday.It’s good.It’s great as an appetizer…

  • Sorina January 15, 2008, 8:18 am

    I have never thought to prepare a chicken like this…interesting idea

  • Vanessa January 17, 2008, 10:43 pm

    Hi Shilpa,

    Have just gone thru this recipe. I just have one query. Yu have mentioned 1/4 lb boneless chicken. What does 1/4 lb mean. Is it 1/2 kg or 1 kg. Pls let me know since I am going to try this recipe very soon. One more thing, your recipes are too good and very yummy. Keep up the good job.



    Shilpa: lb stands for pound. Here in US, these eights are measured in pounds. 1 kg = 2.20462262 pounds. I got confused and wrote on. Have updated now. Thanks

  • Pinaki January 20, 2008, 11:29 pm

    I just love ur blog. I live in NZ surf this site every weekend. Have tried many recipes and most have been yum!
    My mums a karwari and hence the love for konkani food.
    Thanks heaps and keep those recipes rolling…

  • Anuradha January 22, 2008, 4:14 am

    I tried this recipe, it taste was good but it was very watery. In photo it looks sukha chicken but mine was very watery.

    Shilpa: Anuradha, you should have friend for little longer. Use very dry yogurt/curd, do not add water.

  • HITHA January 23, 2008, 11:35 pm

    it was too good,and nandini restaurant was the place where me n my husband used to hang out often ,good that i got a recipe from there
    give some more na plz

  • Suma February 6, 2008, 2:08 pm

    Hi Shilpa.. I tried this recipe yesterday and it come out really good.. My husband just loved it… We both love the food from Nandini restaurant.. Please keep posting good chicken recipes..

  • Mridula Pai March 12, 2008, 4:39 pm

    hey Shilpa,
    I’d tried this yesterday with the chicken that was leftover after using most of it on Sunday. It was an instant hit and my husband simply loved it ! Delicious, I say! Thanks for this super easy recipe.
    – Mridula

  • bhagyashree June 11, 2008, 3:22 am

    recently started checking out recipes, indeed good recipes.good u suggest an chicken dish for kids?my son doesnt eat anything hot,so any nonspicy ones
    thank you

  • Deepa Mamidi June 15, 2008, 10:41 am

    Hi There,

    Thanks for the recipe ,

    I searched for Nandini pepper chicken , and landed here :)

    I love Nandini’s pepper chicken , well not yet done with this recipe , will be back after tasting it



  • koyel August 28, 2008, 12:10 am

    after reading article & all the comments I have tried this……..It was amazing!!!!Usually my hubby is a gourmet but mostly likes bengali cuisine.But it was an exception too good.
    Please keep on posting more :-) :-)

  • suma.b October 18, 2008, 10:54 am

    Thank you for giving us such a tasteful recipe . I expect more and more andhra style mouth watering dishes.

    Thank you,

  • Aruna December 12, 2008, 12:54 pm

    Thanks for posting this wonderful creation. My hubby liked it very much and asked me to make it more often. I used 1/2 lbs boneless chicken and followed your recipe exactly. It was perfect. This will be a regular appetizer when i have guests at home.
    I feel hung curd will not give release any water, as one of your readers mentioned it was watery. Also if they feel it is watery some of the water can be discarded.

    Today is the day for Chicken Ghee Roast.

  • Prachi Bhat January 3, 2009, 9:27 pm

    wot do i say shilpa, I did it again. tried this recipe today, my bro-in-law drove down from US to Canada at our place. He had first bite of this dish and said shouted “Nandhini” blore .. oh whole nite my hubby n him kept on praising me.They said this shud b ur signature recipe and licked their fingers off till last piece. I reallllllly thank u from bottom of my heart. God bless you ! I can never thank you enough for all this. I am hooked to your site now :) Any item I try from ur site turns out perfect as shown in ur pics.. Cooking has never been so easy ! Cheers !!

  • Nivedita Nayak January 30, 2009, 10:11 am

    Hey Shilpa…..thanks for this recipe…this is our favourite too…this is our regular order at Nandini….
    absolutely love your blog….i refer to it regularly.. esp amchi food….
    warm regards n good luck!!!

  • BHARATHI May 27, 2009, 3:44 am


  • Akshata July 21, 2009, 12:51 pm

    Hi Shilpa..

    Firstly thanks soo much for all your wonderful delicious recipes..not just that its easy but also easy to understand with the perfect pictures u post..thats really really helpful..i tried & wil keep trying recipes from here which we simply relish!! :-)..

    Well i tried pepper chicken too which came out wel. Would like to know if u canhelp in giving the recipe for the CHilli Chicken that is prepared in Nandhini Restaurant which is out of this world!! Have been trying to lay my hands on that recipe but not bale to find anywhere. Can you please help me with that?

    Shilpa: I don’t have the recipe, but will check out.

  • Maya July 30, 2009, 12:05 am

    that’s a great recipe.been looking for it.thanks for putting it up.do you know how to make the nandini chicken biryani.if you could give me a recipe for that, i will be so grateful. if you do find one can you gimme a shout at mayacassis@gmail.com
    thanks :)

  • Amit Khanna August 2, 2009, 7:53 am

    Hi, I made Peper Chicken and Veg Biryani, My wife and my cousins loved it…
    Thanks and looking forward for more recipes online.

    Thanks and Cheers!!!

  • Amit Khanna August 2, 2009, 7:58 am


    As mentioned earlier i tried this and it was Fantastic. I love Cooking and i try doing it once a Week (Possibly every Sunday). It would be great if you can give some Chicken Dish with WINE.. I make Maggi and Egg Bhurji with RED Wine.. It tastes really good.

  • Munni September 15, 2009, 1:42 pm

    Tried this recipe over the weekend. I had a bad cold & this spicy hot chicken surely helped. Thanks for such easy & great tasting recipe.

  • Aparna May 1, 2010, 3:03 pm

    Hey Shilpa,

    There was a party at home and i followed ur pepper chicken recipe. Turned out great. And you know what ?? My friends said that it was better than the one we had had in restaurants. That was the ultimate compliment !! Thank you so much for the recipe !!


  • sandhya June 18, 2010, 3:25 am

    Hi Shilpa i hv noticed that if v try yr recipe exactly as per the quantity as posted by you, it turns awesome.
    thanks for loading great recipes.

    Shilpa have u tried the pepper chicken in KFC. can u post this recipe thnks

  • sapna August 22, 2010, 9:54 pm


  • Rachna December 12, 2010, 3:14 am

    Hi …

    I have browsed the net often to try and get the Nandhini style Andhra chicken (Green with lots of green chillies).The search throws up everything else but the one that only a person who has eaten it at Bangalore Nandhini will know.
    Would you be able to post that one soon. I am sure it will be a great hit.

  • kalps February 2, 2011, 11:39 pm

    Dish looks yummmy…Do u happen to hv the recipe for Nandini’s biryani and their French chicken? plz mail me at this id

  • Shruti September 12, 2011, 6:34 am

    Anybody aware of Nandini Palace Chicken Biryani and Chilly chicken recipes??? Please post it…

  • Feroze Rayeen December 19, 2011, 2:02 am

    recipe seems to to be very simple and easy to cook, today I will try.

  • Shravanthi February 6, 2012, 6:42 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    I am a beginner in cooking and learning non-veg as my husband is a great of non veg food.. We live here in Bangalore and are great fans of nandini Restaurant… It has become costly now and I always end up wondering if I could find recipes that are made in Nandini Restaurant so that I could save on cost but still have the same yum food…

    Thanks for the recipe up there… I wish to request you to mail me the recipe of Chicken Biryani and chicken curry.. I have tried several versions of them found on the net but not very satisfied… I would be most grateful to you if you could help me! Thanks…


    • Shilpa February 7, 2012, 9:30 am

      There are many versions of chicken biryanis on the site. Just search for ‘Biryani’

  • reshma April 27, 2012, 7:46 am

    u r just wow, wonderful recipes, wonderful cookin I tried many recipes n alll was a big success, ur masala puri 2 was much loved one,
    i am ur great fan n Ikeep talking about ur site to my mom n all my frns,
    thanks a lot!
    looking for great new recipes

  • Latha July 18, 2012, 7:11 am

    I have ate chilly chicken in Hotel Nandhini bangalore, can i get the receipe for that?

  • Pallavi November 12, 2012, 12:35 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    Lovely recipe, except that I would grill it rather than deep fry it.
    You can easily baste the chicken pieces with oil and grill it.
    It would taste just as good and infact healthier.
    Thanks for your lovely recipes.

    • Shilpa November 12, 2012, 8:07 am

      Pallavi, grilling is good option. But in the recipe it is shallow fried, not deep fried.

  • sanju July 11, 2014, 11:59 pm

    Shilpa how much time chiken takes to cook?

    • Shilpa July 12, 2014, 4:37 pm

      Depends on the kind of chicken. I use the tender chicken breasts which cook in around 10mins

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