Chicken Kurma- A Southern Indian Gem (Potato Kurma)

Kurma/ Korma is in essence a mild yet flavourful gravy base. It is usually slow cooked with braised vegetables/ cheese or meat. Korma became part of the Indian cuisine when Mughals invaded India as far back as 16th century and then over time it got distinct through regional influences. 
A North Indian Korma is different from the South Indian version of the same. Both taste amazing and I find hard to decide which one I like better.

Chicken Kurma
Chicken Kurma

A few weeks back I came home from work and was craving Kurma. So I prepared a Chicken Kurma which truly is a Southern Indian Gem. I made this dish for hubby with Chicken and added some potatoes with the rest of the gravy for myself. (Yes I do not eat Chicken as such) So feel free to make the Kurma with potatoes for the vegetarian version of the same.

Braising the Chicken
Braising the Chicken

The ingredients needed are:

  • Chicken/ Potatoes- 500 gms
  • Onion- 2 medium sized finely chopped 
  • Ginger paste- 1.5 teaspoons
  • Garlic paste – 1.5 teaspoons
  • Lemon juice- 1.5 tablespoons
  • Curry Leaves – 6-7 
  • Turmeric powder – 2.5 teaspoons
  • Bay Leaves – 2 
  • Black Cardamon- 2
  • Ghee – 1 tablespoon
  • Olive Oil- 2 tablespoons
  • Red Chilli Powder- 1.5 teaspoons
  • Fennel Powder- 2 teaspoons
  • Coriander Powder – 1.5 teaspoon
  • Cardamon powder (Elaichi Powder)- 1/2 teaspoon
  • Cinnamon powder- a pinch
  • Pepper Powder – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Diced Tomato Can- 2 tablespoons
  • Poppy Seeds – 1 teaspoon (Khaskhas)
  • Cashews- 1.5 tablespoon
  • Water – 1.5 cup
  • Freshly grated coconut- 4 tablespoons
  • Salt to taste 
Adding the paste to cook it
Adding the paste to cook it

Method of Preparation:

  • Soak the cashews and poppy seeds (Khaskhas) in warm water for an hour. Drain the water and add the poppy seeds and cashews to the grated coconut. Add 1 teaspoon turmeric, the fennel powder, pepper powder, cinnamon and coriander powder to this mixture. Grind to a fine paste.
  • Cut the chicken into cubes wash well, apply 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric, salt and lemon juice to it. Mix well. Cover it with a cling-wrap and keep it in the fridge for about 15 -20 minutes.
The Chicken/ Potatoes added to the gravy
The Chicken/ Potatoes added to the gravy
  • Now take a thick bottomed kadhai/ wide vessel. Add the ghee and one tablespoon of oil to it. Let it heat. Now add the remaining turmeric powder, the black cardamons and the bay leaves. About 2 minutes later once the flavour of the whole spices is infused, take the bay leaves and black cardamons out of the kadhai and keep aside. 
  • Add the curry leaves and let them crackle. Then add the onions and cook till they are pinkish brown. Then add the marinated chicken and braise the chicken. About 2-3 minutes later the chicken should be cooked on the outside. However it should still not be fully cooked on the inside. Take the chicken mix and keep aside. 
  • If using potatoes follow the same method. However you will need to braise potatoes for nearly 6-8 minutes so that they are nearly cooked. 
the gravy is done and chicken/potatoes are cooked.
the gravy is done and chicken/potatoes are cooked.
  • In the same utensil add the remaining oil, once heated add the ginger and garlic paste and then add the diced tomato. Cook on low to medium flame until oil leaves the sides.
  • Next add the ground cashew- poppy seed- coconut paste. Stir well and cover with a lid for about 6-7 minutes. You can see the colour of the gravy darken. Then add the braised chicken/ potatoes to the mix.
  • Add 1 cup water at this stage and mix well. Cover with a lid and cook for 10-12 minutes. Add the salt and red chilli powder at this stage.
  • You can check to see if the chicken/ potatoes have cooked. If not cover and cook for 5-7 minutes again. 
  • You can see the oil leaving the sides and the fragrance permeating through your kitchen. 
Chicken Kurma
Chicken Kurma
  • The gravy does start to thicken and you can add 1/2 cup of water again to thin out the gravy to desired consistency. We like our Kurma gravy thick. 
  • Your Chicken/ Potato Kurma is now ready. Serve hot with Dosa or steamed rice. 
Chicken Kurma- Are You Readyaaaaa
Chicken Kurma- Are You Readyaaaaa

So what are you waiting for!! Are you READYYAAAA For some KURMA ……

Recipe and styling by Sharvari P Mehan
Photography by Ankit Mehan 

Do leave your feedback in the comments below. Have a Great week ahead.

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