Royal-style chicken korma


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

The Complete Indian Regional Cookbook: 300 Classic Recipes from the Great Regions of India

The Complete Indian Regional Cookbook

By Mridula Baljekar

Published 2017

  • About

The presence of royal households in central India established the practice of preparing luxurious food that is now widespread. There are many types of korma, which is a technique rather than a dish. With its savoury cashew sauce, this Murgh Korma Shahi recipe is different in taste from the kormas of south India.


  • 675 g/lb boned chicken thighs or breast fillets, skinned and cut into 5cm/2 in pieces
  • 75 g/3 oz/1 cup whole-milk natural (plain) yogurt
  • 10 ml/2 tsp gram flour (besan)
  • 5 ml/1 tsp salt
  • 10 ml/2 tsp ginger purée
  • 10 ml/2 tsp garlic purée
  • 60 ml/4 tbsp ghee or unsalted butter
  • 2.5 cm/1 in piece of cinnamon stick
  • 1 large onion, finely sliced
  • 2.5 ml/1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 15 ml/1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 2.5 ml/1 tsp chilli powder, or to taste
  • 50 g/2 oz/72 cup raw unsalted cashew nuts, soaked in boiling water for 15 minutes
  • 150 ml/5fl oz/ cup double (heavy) cream
  • 2.5 ml/1 tsp ground cardamom
  • 2.5 ml/1 tsp ground mace
  • flat bread, to serve


  1. Put the chicken in a large bowl. Beat the yogurt and the gram flour together and add to the chicken. Add the salt, ginger and garlic, and mix. Cover with clear film (plastic wrap) and leave for 1 hour.

  2. Heat the ghee or butter in a heavy pan over a medium heat and add the cinnamon, followed by the onion. Stir-fry for 5–6 minutes, until the onion is soft and translucent.

  3. Add the turmeric, coriander and chilli powder, stir-fry for 1 minute, then add the marinated chicken to the pan.

  4. Increase the heat slightly and stir-fry the ingredients for about 3–4 minutes or until the chicken changes colour.

  5. Pour in 300ml/1 pint/ cups warm water, bring it to the boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

  6. Drain the cashew nuts and purée them in a food processor or blender with the cream. Add to the chicken. Simmer for 2–3 minutes.

  7. Stir in the ground cardamom and mace. Remove from the heat. Serve with flat bread.

Per portion Energy 343kcal/1450kJ; Protein 54g; Carbohydrate 18g, of which sugars 10.7g; Fat 6.8g, of which saturates 2.6g; Cholesterol 151mg; Calcium 66mg; Fibre 1.8g; Sodium 197mg.