Chicken korma gets a bad reputation, and rightly so when most people’s experience of it is the bland and jaundiced sort you fi nd from a dodgy takeaway. But the korma is, unlike the ‘tikka masala,’ a traditional Indian dish with subtlety and sophistication that is often lacking in our British versions. This recipe – which makes no claim to authenticity – revitalises the dish with colour and spice. As with all curries, these measurements are a guideline but it will depend on the spices you’re using and personal taste. Don’t be afraid to add a little more if it feels lacking in flavour!
Whole spices: 1 inch cinnamon, 6 cardamom pods, 6 cloves
2 onions sliced into orbits
4 cloves garlic and 2 inches ginger finely chopped
Powdered spices: ½-1 tsp chilli powder, 2 tsp coriander powder, ½ tsp turmeric, ½ tsp garam masala
1 kg chicken thighs/drumsticks (keep the bones on if you can and try to avoid chicken breast)
3 tsp greek yoghurt
3 tsp ground almonds mixed with 2 tsp greek yoghurt and 1 tsp water
1 tsp salt
Pepper to season
Chopped coriander (to garnish)
Method Get a wide pan on a high heat and drop in the whole spices in some vegetable oil until they sizzle, turn down the heat a bit and then fry the onions. Stir occasionally for 15 mins – you want them to be nicely caramelised to add sweetness to the dish. Adding some salt at this stage helps as it draws out the water. Add in the garlic and ginger and stir for another five minutes. Mix in all the other spices apart from the garam masala, and then add the chicken, sealing on all sides. Add in the yoghurt and a little water and leave covered to cook for 20 minutes. Finally, add in the almond paste and salt, and mix in the garam masala. Garnish with coriander.