Easy, Delicious Goan Chicken Cafreal

Updated on July 18, 2017

Chicken Cafreal

Dexter's Chicken Cafreal

5 stars from 2 ratings of Chicken Cafreal

Chicken Cafreal

Chicken Cafreal is a rich, delicious, traditional Goan dish. It is a mildly spicy dish with a dry gravy; It's usually accompanied by potato wedges.

It is said that Cafreal originated in Mozambique and later the Portuguese adopted this dish, making some changes to the ingredients before reaching Goa hundreds of years ago.

One of my favorite dishes, it is one of those rare dishes that enchants and mesmerizes your taste buds. Follow the simple step-by-step recipe below, and enjoy this delightful Cafreal.

Cafreal Ingredients

  • 500 gms Chicken legs
  • 3 tsp fresh ginger, crushed into paste
  • 3 tsp fresh garlic, crushed into paste
  • 1 bunch coriander leaves
  • 10-12 mint leaves
  • 7 black pepper corns
  • 7 garlic cloves
  • 7 cloves
  • 3-4 green chillies
  • 1 cinnamon stick, 2
  • 1 fresh ginger piece, 2
  • 2 tsp poppy seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tamarind ball, small
  • 1 lemon
  • 3 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp cooking oil
  • salt

* Mise en place - French culinary phrase that means "getting all the required ingredients and items required ready."

Lets Cook

  1. Get the Mise en place.
  2. Clean and wash the chicken legs, Make slits in the legs to form pockets.
  3. Apply salt, garlic and ginger paste to the chicken, and keep aside for 10 mins.
  4. Take the above ingredients (coriander leaves, mint leaves, pepper corns, garlic cloves, green chilies, cloves, cinnamon, fresh ginger, poppy seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric powder, sugar, salt, little water) and grind the mixture together to make a smooth green marination paste.
  5. Take the tamarind ball and soak in water for few mins, squeeze it to extract the juice.
  6. Mix the tamarind juice with the marination paste. Now forming the Cafreal masala.
  7. Apply the cafreal masala to the chicken, apply the masala well into the pockets, add freshly squeezed lemon juice. and mix well.
  8. Keep the chicken overnight for marination.
  9. Remove the chicken 20 mins before cooking.
  10. There are two methods to cook: Bake or Fry:
  11. #Baking: Rub some cooking oil to the baking tray, place the chicken and let it cook slowly, roughly 30-40 mins on slow heat. Change the sides occasionally.
  12. #Frying: Heat some oil in a pan, add the chicken and let it cook slowly on medium flame. Change the sides occasionally.
  13. Serve hot accompanied by fried or baked potatoes.

Chicken slit to make pockets

soak tamarind in water

tamarind paste

Cafreal Masala

Cafreal masala application

Cafreal chicken

Enjoy your delicious cafreal chicken

Please rate this recipe, share reviews & post your questions below, I would love to know how it turned out.

Did you try any interesting twists ? Please share...

Questions & Answers


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      • Dexter Dias profile imageAUTHOR

        Dexter Dias 

        20 months ago

        Thanks Shraddha

      • profile image

        Shraddha Patinge 

        20 months ago

        Hey Dexter.. hope u doing good :)

        Definitely going to try this recipe

      • Dexter Dias profile imageAUTHOR

        Dexter Dias 

        20 months ago

        Thanks Pooja

      • Pooja Waghule profile image

        Pooja Waghule 

        20 months ago

        It looks delicious . I am gonna try it soon.


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