East Indian Tope – Chicken & Beaten Rice Recipe

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4.67 out of 5 Stars by 3 readers!

East Indian Tope, a marriage of our Portuguese cultural inheritance with our Maharashtrian Indian roots. It’s the perfect all in one meal at any time. Find out how to cook this yummy East Indian recipe.

It was my turn to help mom in the kitchen yesterday, and we were making Chicken Tope again after a long time. yeah, we like Mutton Tope too, but this time it was chicken. 😉 Just so you know, tope is pronounced as “toh-pay”. From the hall sis kept taking breaks from her work to scream, ‘Take pictures, take pictures of the chicken!’. We had already started chopping the onions and the chillies, so no pictures of that. Anyway I managed to take a few pics in the middle of mess.

By the way, did you know that my friend Karen makes some great tasting vegan BBQ chicken! It was the first I heard of vegan meat, but yeah, that’s a thing!

What Ingredients Do You Need for Chicken Tope?

Chicken, Poha (beaten rice), Onions, Green Chillies, Ginger, Ghee, Cinnamon powder and a few Cardamoms, East Indian Bottle Masala(see substitution notes in the recipe), Coriander leaves, Mint leaves and Sourlimes. You will find Poha in the Asian section of your supermarket. (If you need more information about poha, you’ll find it at the bottom of the post here.)

How to make the East Indian Chicken Tope

We had already cut a whole chicken into pieces. So we sliced about half a kilogram of onions, along with 8 green chillies (we’re spicy like that, ha!) and ginger.

Onions, Ginger, garlic, and ghee for the-East-Indian-tope-recipe by -Sarah -TheWingedFork
Frying the masala, aka onions, garlic, ginger, and chillies

Mom then set me to heating 3 large spoons of ghee (the traditional Indian version of clarified butter) in the toap (vessel). We then added in the chopped onions and chillies, and fried it for about 5 minutes.

See the steam rising out of the sauteing onions, garlic and ginger
See the steam and smell the garlic

We chop the ginger fine and then crush it. The garlic cloves we just crush to release the flavor.

Next, we add in the crushed garlic and ginger to the onion mixture and fry for another 7 minutes.

Add in the cinnamom powder and crushed cardamom to the onion, ginger and chilli mix
Add in the cinnamom powder and crushed cardamom

Next comes 1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder and the crushed cardamoms.

Add in the chicken pieces and bottle masala and mix well
Here’s how the chicken looks after adding the bottle masala

We then added in the chicken pieces and about two and a half spoons of the East Indian bottle masala, 700 ml water, and left it to cook on a medium flame for about 10 minutes. The pic above is just before we add the water in.

Chicken tope mix before we add the beaten rice in
One more pic of the chicken tope before we add the poha in

Here’s one more closeup pic of the chicken! It would taste great as a stir fry on its own, but why leave it that way? So onwards to make the famous East Indian chicken tope.

East indian chicken cooking in the gravy on a low flame
Chicken tope cooking on a low flame

While we’re doing that sis takes another break from her work to scream, ‘Pictures! Pictures!’ We scream back, ‘You come and take pics if you want!’ But she’s got deadlines and isn’t leaving the computer. So we feel sorry for her and take some pics. She’s lucky she has us, isn’t she?

Chop the fresh coriander roughly
Chop the coriander roughly
Add in coriander and mint to the  chicken gravy
Adding in the more ingredients, especially the mint and coriander

After a bit, we add in the chopped coriander and mint leaves. Mom then sets me to squeezing the juice of 2 whole sourlimes in it and turn off the fire in a few minutes.

Once we’ve taken the chicken off the flame, we add in the poha and leave it be for some time.

add in the beaten rice aka poha to the chicken and leave to rest
After taking it off the flame, add in the poha and leave to rest
After turning the flame off, add in the poha to the chicken tope and leave to rest
Add in the poha to the chicken tope and leave to rest

After some time we see that the poha, which is a form of beaten rice has absorbed all of the gravy from the toap aka pot and grown to double its size.

The East-Indian-Special-Tope-is ready to serve- Pic by Sarah -TheWingedFork
Chicken Tope ready to eat

We just stirred it once more and then garnished with some roughly chopped coriander before digging in. That’s it, quite simple and easy. Our delicious East Indian Special Chicken Tope was ready to relish!

Chicken tope meal in a white dish with freshly cut tomato wedges in a dish near it
I just love chicken tope!
The traditional East Indian chicken tope is the perfect one pot dish for picnics
The traditional East Indian chicken tope is the perfect dish for picnics

What’s Perfect About This Chicken Tope Recipe?

  • We love our chicken tope because it’s the perfect all-in-one dish.
  • It’s similar to the Indian biryani but truly in a league of its own.
  • It’s also perfect to carry for picnics and serve with a side of fresh tomatoes!
  • Poha or beaten rice is healthier than regular rice.

Cooking Tips and Tricks

  • If you can’t find East Indian Bottle Masala in your country, use a 2:1 mix of Garam Masala and Chilli powder. It will get you there taste-wise.
  • You can replace the Sourlimes with Apple Cider vinegar. Use vinegar that’s only half the quantity of lemon juice.
  • You can make this dish with Mutton too. All the steps are the same!

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You can print off the list of ingredients and instructions to follow for making this recipe via the recipe card below (for home use only).

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The traditional East Indian chicken tope is the perfect one pot dish for picnics

Recipe for Special East Indian Chicken Tope

Special East Indian Chicken Tope is a marriage of our Portuguese cultural inheritance with our Konkan Maharashtrian Indian roots, a perfect all in one gluten free meal.
4.67 out of 5 Stars by 3 readers!

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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 22 mins
Resting Time 10 mins
Total Time 52 mins
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine East Indian, Indian
Diet Gluten Free
Servings 12 Servings
Calories 271 kcal


  • 1 Chicken Cut into pieces
  • 500 g Onions Sliced
  • 2 tbsp East Indian Bottle Masala See notes for substitutions.
  • 8 Green Chillies – Fresh
  • 2 in Ginger
  • 12 flakes Garlic Crushed for flavor
  • 3 tbsp Ghee (Indian clarified butter)
  • 8 pods Green Cardamon Pods (Choti Elaichi) Crushed
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon Powder (Dalchini)
  • 2 tbsp Fresh Coriander Leaves Roughly chopped
  • 2 Sourlimes Juiced
  • 400 g Poha (Indian Beaten Rice or Flattened Rice)
  • 1.5 tbsp Salt
  • 700 ml Water


  • Chop the onions long and the chillies fine and fry for 5 minutes with 3 tbsp ghee.
  • Add in the crushed ginger and garlic, and salt and continue to stir for 7 minutes.
  • Add in the crushed cardamoms and cinnamom powder.
  • Add in the East Indian bottle masala and chicken pieces with 700 ml water and stir occasionally on medium fire for 10 minutes.
  • Once the chicken is cooked, add in some of the mint leaves and coriander, the juice of two limes and stir.
  • Turn the flame off. Add in the poha and leave to rest for 10 minutes.
  • Stir again and garnish with the rest of the chopped mint leaves and coriander before serving.

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  • We never use fixed amounts of ingredients. So feel free to add or remove as per your taste.
  • If you cannot find bottle masala in nearby stores, use a 2:1 mix of garam masala and chilli powder.
  • Gluten free as long as your ingredients are properly sourced. 
  • Poha or beaten rice is available in the Asian section of supermarkets. You can also buy it on Ebay or Amazon.

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Nutrition (Per Serving)

Calories: 271kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 57mg | Sodium: 1061mg | Potassium: 204mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 97IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 1mg

Disclaimer: Nutrition Information per serving is estimated by a third party software based on the ingredients used, and is for informational purposes only. It will vary from product to product, based on methods of preparation, origin and freshness of ingredients. Please consult the package labels of the ingredients you use, or chat with your dietician for specific details.

Well that’s it for my gluten free East Indian chicken tope recipe. Comment and tell me how much you liked it!

Pinterest image of chicken tope for a recipe about the traditional East Indian Chicken Tope

Information about Poha or Beaten Rice

Just updated to add info about beaten rice or poha for some of my readers who haven’t tasted it before.

What Is Poha?

Beaten rice or flattened rice or poha is a rice that has been parboiled, then flattened by rolling and finally dried to produce flakes. The flakes can vary in texture and thickness, with different types being used in both sweet and savory Indian snacks and dishes. Originating in Maharastra, India, the most popular Indian snack is the namesake, the Maharastrian poha.

Beaten rice is an easy on-the-go snack. Just add the poha with any spices and leave it to soak in a pot of boiling water, and it’s done in 10 minutes. But of course, spend 10 or 20 more minutes with it and you can create a whole array of dishes, from chiwda to vadas, from pudding to pakodas.

How are poha flakes made? How is poha made?

Poha flakes are made by parboiling rice, then rolling and flattening them out before leaving them to dry. Different levels of rolling and flattening will result in rice of differing thicknesses. We often use the finer poha in snacks and the thicker poha in breakfast or lunch/dinner recipes.

Beaten rice is a fat-free gluten-free food that’s easy on the heart and the stomach. You can find it in raw or pre-cooked form in the Asian section of Walmart’s and Amazon or any other supermarket worldwide.

I’ll come back with a recipe for another poha sometime soon. 😉

Pinterest image of chicken tope for a post about How to make the East Indian Chicken Tope
How to make the East Indian Chicken Tope
Pinterest image of two bowls of the chicken tope dish and one bowl of freshly cut tomatoes
Pinterest image of chicken tope (an East Indian meal) in a white dish
Pinterest image of East Indian chicken tope dish.

12 thoughts on “East Indian Tope – Chicken & Beaten Rice Recipe”

    • Thanks Julia. Beaten rice or poha is a South Asian cooking ingredient. It is rice that has been parboiled, then flattened by rolling and finally dried to produce flakes. It’s similar to dried cereals, but at the same time very different. You’ll find it in the Asian food section of the store.

    • Thanks Claire. Beaten rice or is a form of rice flakes that finds use in Indian cooking. Updating the recipe to add in a description. 🙂 You’ll find it in the Asian food section of any stores.

  1. Here we cooked chicken in Tender coconut and which is best food as healthy receipe.
    Ingrdients :
    Tender Coconut – 2
    chicken – 1kg
    ginger,garlic paste – 2 tsp
    garam masala – 2tsp
    red chilli powder – 2 tsp
    pepper powder – 2tsp
    chicken masala – 2tsp
    turmeric powder – 2tsp
    lemon – 2
    coriander – required

    cut chicken into small pieces. mix all mixer powders together in chicken, mix nicely.
    Then fill mixed chicken in tender coconut after drinking the juice of it. fire the tender coconut for 3 hrs.
    After 3hrs, Open the tender coconut to taste the cooked chicken which mixed with tender coconut. Chicken Ready.
    If get a chance Dont forget to Try it.
    Tender coconut chicken try it yourself https://youtu.be/GUUJB60g1wY4 stars


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