Chicken 65 recipe | Hyderabadi Chicken 65 | Indian Chicken starter
The best and authentic Chicken 65 recipe. Learn how to make Restaurant-style Chicken 65 at home with step by step guide. The recipe is simple and super easy to make and the taste is just like a restaurant.
Being a foodie, I love the different cuisines in India. There is diversity from North to South and East to West, and each cuisine is so unique.
For non-vegetarians, Chicken is a wonderful delicacy that is relished in various forms. If you are looking for a different Indian Chicken starter recipe, then this Chicken 65 recipe is for you.
I have a habit of trying different dishes at restaurants. This is how I got introduced to Chicken 65. Instantly, I fell in love with the flavors.
Bite-size chicken pieces had a crisp outer coating and soft inside. The spicy and tangy sauce coating each piece was a burst of flavor. After relishing the dish, I decided that I have to make it at home.
Once we visited a famous roadside Chinese stall in Hyderabad. I ordered Chicken 65 so that I could see the making process. My eyes were keenly focused on the making process. The ingredients used were familiar and common in an Indian pantry.
One major concern about this dish was the color. The dish is loaded with red food color.
Next, experiments started and finally, it was a success. I do not like to add food color, so I came up with a substitute.
Origin of Chicken 65
When heard of Chicken 65 for the first time, the name sounded peculiar for a chicken dish. I thought it was a Chinese chicken starter just like Chicken Manchurian or Chili Chicken.
It invoked some curiosity, about why and how the dish got its name. So I did some research and came across interesting and funny stories;
Some say it’s because 65 small chicken pieces were used to prepare the dish.
Some say it’s because 65 different spices are used in the making of Chicken 65. Isn’t it too much for the human tongue to handle?
A story says that 65 days old chicken was used to make spicy deep-fried chicken.
Another one, the dish was listed at the 65th number on the menu card.
The one story which makes sense is Chicken 65 was introduced in the year 1965 by Buhari restaurant in Chennai.
Originating in Tamil Nadu, Chicken 65 has become a universal favorite.
In South India, the Chicken 65 recipe has many variations depending on the region. Andhra style, Hyderabadi style, Madras/Chennai style, Kerala style, and street style. The process is more or less the same, with slight variations in the ingredients.
Some people marinate the chicken pieces with local Indian spices, add flour for coating, and deep fry. Topped with fried green chilies and curry leaves.
Some people follow the above process and toss the fried chicken in a tempering of garlic, green chilies, and curry leaves.
Some people toss the fried chicken pieces in a spicy and tangy yogurt/curd sauce.
What is Hyderabadi Chicken 65?
Chicken 65 is one of the most popular starters in Hyderabadi cuisine restaurants, street food carts, pubs, bars.
It is also common in Hyderabadi weddings, functions, during the month of Ramadan for iftar.
Hyderabadi Restaurant style Chicken 65 is different from other versions. Marinated chicken pieces are fried and tossed in spicy yogurt sauce.
The ingredients and process make this dish unique. Crisp and soft fried chicken pieces are coated with flavorsome ingredients – garlic, green chilies, curry leaves, sauces, coriander leaves, and a unique blend of spices. A bite and it’s a party in the mouth.
The dish is loaded with strong flavors. On request, it is made spicy which puts your tongue on fire.
Because of yogurt sauce, the chicken dish can be called Chicken 65 gravy. There is just enough sauce to coat the chicken pieces well. So, this is also ordered as a side dish with any type of biryani, pulao, fried rice, and lacha parathas.
Hyderabadi Chicken 65 recipe
In Hyderabad, the Chicken 65 recipe has two versions;
- Chicken 65 dry: Boneless chicken pieces are marinated with a spicy masala and fried till crisp. Served along with raw onions, lemon wedge and garnished with fried green chillies and crispy curry leaves. This version is popular at roaside stall.
- Chicken 65 gravy: Marinated chicken pieces are fried and tossed in spicy and tang sauce made with garlic, green chillies, curry leaves, buttermilk and Indian spices. This version can also be called Indo- Chinese Chicken 65 and is mostly available in restaurants and Irani cafes under Chinese category in the menu.
I will share Indo Chinese Chicken 65 recipe.
The dry version is just frying the marinated chicken. However, I will also share how to make Chicken 65 dry with tips to make it extra crisp. This version is also very popular in Hyderabad.
Hyderabadi Chicken 65 recipe can be divided into 3 steps-
- Marinate the bite size chicken pieces.
- Deep fry till crispy.
- Toss in a flavorful, spicy and tangy yogurt sauce.
Reasons to try Hyderabadi Chicken 65
- Does not need any fancy ingredients.
- Perfect starter for Family gatherings, parties, potluck.
- Unique taste and packed with South Indian flavors.
- Crispy outside and juicy inside, it is a heavenly appetizer.
- Addictive taste.
- Delicious snacks for kids.
- Great as a side dish with dal and rice.
Ingredients to make Hyderabadi Chicken 65
Ingredients for irresistibly delicious chicken snacks are easily available in your kitchen.
Chicken: I have used boneless chicken. You can use breast or thighs.
Marinade: Ginger-Galic paste, Red Chili powder, Garam masala, Lemon juice, Black pepper powder, Salt.
Coating: Egg, all-purpose flour & cornflour. These three act as sticky glue to attach all the other ingredients to the surface of the chicken pieces.
Oil: To deep fry and to temper.
Tempering: Curry leaves, Green chilies, Garlic, Finely chopped onion, Curd, Tomato ketchup, Red Chili sauce, Kashmiri red chili powder, or Beetroot juice, Red chili powder, Garam masala.
How to make Hyderabadi Chicken 65
1. First step is to marinate the chicken. In a bowl, add bite-size chicken pieces, ginger-garlic paste, red chili powder, black pepper powder, salt, egg, cornflour, and all-purpose flour (maida). Mix all the ingredients well. Set aside for at least 30 minutes. If you feel the batter is thick, add little water and mix.
2. Second step is to fry the chicken. Heat oil in a pan/kadai. Drop chicken pieces one by one. On medium flame, fry till golden color on all sides. Take the fried chicken pieces on a plate and set them aside.
3. Final step is to temper the fried chicken.
1. In a bowl, add curd, red chili powder, kashmiri red chili powder, garam masala, coriander powder, red chili sauce, and tomato sauce.
2. Add beetroot juice and water. Mix well.
3. Heat oil in a pan/wok. Add chopped garlic, chopped or slit green chilies, curry leaves, and finely chopped onion. Saute on high flame. Do not let the garlic burn. If you like capsicum and onion, add cubes at this stage.
4. Turn the flame to low and add the curd.
5. On medium flame, cook for a min or two.
6. Add the fried chicken pieces.
7. Mix the chicken pieces well till the yogurt sauce is absorbed.
At this stage, you adjust the sauce consistency as per your preference. If you dry, toss the chicken pieces until the sauce has completely dried and coated the chicken pieces well.
8. Lastly, add coriander leaves and give a gentle mix.
Hyderabadi Chicken 65 is ready to relish.
Choice of Chicken: In restaurants, boneless chicken is used. If making it for kids, I recommend using chicken breast or thighs. The cut of chicken pieces should be bite-size. Also, small pieces will take less time to cook.
However, at home, you can use chicken with bone too. Cooking time will slightly vary.
Use Egg: Egg helps the main coating stick to the chicken pieces while deep frying. Because of the egg, there is an even coating around the chicken pieces. It helps to give a lighter texture and chicken pieces do not get hard after frying. Without the egg, the masala will be loose, and while frying will leave the chicken pieces.
Do not use more eggs: A small egg is enough for 250-500 gms of chicken. If the size of the egg is large, add only half. If the quantity of eggs is more, not only the chicken will be soggy but it will have an egg smell.
Do not skip curry leaves: I recommend using fresh and tender curry leaves. When the curry leaves are fried in oil, they leave a great flavor in the oil.
Marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes. Do not skip this step for the best taste. If possible, marinate overnight in the refrigerator. The meat will absorb all the flavors from the spices and act as a tenderizer too.
Yogurt/curd: Make sure the curd is fresh. Do not very sour curd. It will spoil the taste of the dish.
Cornflour should be double that of maida: It helps in crispy texture.
Kashmiri Red Chili powder: Use it instead of any food color. This lends the restaurant-style bright red color.
Beetroot juice for color(optional): Grate the beetroot, squeeze it with help of your palm, and extract its juice. The juice gives a bright rich red color to the dish.
Deep fry the chicken in medium hot oil: If fried in very hot oil, the chicken pieces will quickly get a dark color and will remain undercooked from the inside. If the oil is not hot enough, the chicken pieces will absorb the oil and become oily.
Do not overcrowd the pan: If you overcrowd, the oil temperature will come down and the chicken pieces will be oily. Also, the pieces will not cook evenly. So, fry the chicken pieces in small batches.
How to avoid curd from curdling: There are chances that curd to curdle and it will spoil the look of the dish. To avoid curdling, I mix spices and sauces in the curd. The same can be followed while making curries too.
Consistency of Chicken 65: While serving as a starter or appetizer, let the chicken pieces absorb all the yogurt sauce. If serving as a side dish for parathas, or roti, turn off the flame when there is little moisture (can see in pic 8) but not dry.
How to make Chicken 65 dry?
Chicken 65 dry is just fry the marinated chicken.
Mix the chicken pieces with ginger-garlic paste, red chili powder & kashmiri red chili powder, garam masala, black pepper powder, egg or curd, cornflour, rice flour (for crispier texture), salt to taste.
Marinate for at least 30 minutes. Deep fry in medium hot oil till golden color. In the same oil, fry green chilies, and curry leaves. Add them on top of fried chicken.
You can double fry for an extra crisp texture. First, fry till half done and let it rest for 5-10 minutes. Fry again in very hot oil for a min or two.
This chicken dish is a lip-smacking entrée. The ingredients used to make it a versatile dish. You can serve this dish as an appetizer with raw onions and lemon slices. It also tastes great as a side dish with parathas, roti, rumali roti, naan, and rice varieties like Biryani, Pulao, Egg Fried rice, Bagara Rice, Schezwan Veg Fried rice, Sambar & Rice combo.
Tried this authentic Chicken 65 recipe? Let us know how it went in the comments below! You can also follow me on Instagram to see what’s latest in my kitchen!
Chicken 65 recipe | Hyderabadi Chicken 65 | Restaurant style Chicken 65
To Marinate the Chicken
- 250 gms Chicken boneless (breast or thigh)
- 1 tsp Ginger garlic paste
- 1 tsp Red chili powder
- 1/4-1/2 tsp Black pepper powder
- 1 small Egg
- 1 tsp Salt
- 2 tbspn Cornflour
- 1 tbspn All-purpose flour (Maida)
For Chicken 65 gravy
- 3 tbspn Oil
- 4-6 Garlic cloves (chopped)
- 3-4 Green chilies (diamond cut or slit )
- 8-10 Curry leaves
- 1/2 Onion (finely chopped)
- 1/4 cup Curd (fresh)
- 1/4 cup Water
- 2 tbspn Red chili sauce
- 1 tbspn Tomato sauce
- 1 tsp Kashmiri red chili powder
- 1 tsp Garam masala powder or Chicken masala powder
- 1 tsp Beetroot juice (optional)
- Salt to taste
- Coriander leaves
Marinate the Chicken
- In a bowl, add the chicken chunks, salt, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, black pepper powder, ginger garlic paste, garam masala powder, an egg, cornflour, maida.
- Mix everything well.
- Set aside for at least 30 minutes. If you feel the batter is thick, add little water and mix.
Fry the Chicken
- Heat oil in a pan/kadai. Drop chicken pieces one by one. On medium flame, fry till golden color on all sides. Take the fried chicken pieces on a plate and set them aside.
Temper the fried Chicken
- In a bowl, add curd, red chili powder, garam masala, coriander powder, red chili sauce, and tomato sauce.
- Add beetroot juice and water. Mix well.
- Heat oil in a pan/wok. Add chopped garlic, chopped or slit green chilies, curry leaves, and finely chopped onion. Saute on high flame. Do not let the garlic burn.
- Turn the flame to low and add the curd.
- On medium flame, cook for a min or two.
- Add the fried chicken pieces.
- On high heat, toss the chicken pieces well till the yogurt sauce is absorbed.
- Lastly, add coriander leaves and give a gentle mix.
- Hyderabadi Chicken 65 is ready to relish. Serve with onion rings and lemon wedges.