Chicken Korma

Always seen as the curry for those who don’t like spice, yet again I’m getting on my soapbox to say that:- A: ‘Spicy’ doesn’t necessarily mean ‘Hot’ and B: Korma’s don’t need to be mild.  A Korma tends to be a creamy curry, often using  combinations of coconut, yoghurt, cream & nuts.  However, you can make this as hot or as mild as you like!  This recipe is more of a ‘medium’ dish – the pepper and green chilli provide the real kick.  If you want it hotter, just add more green chilli, if you want it milder, reduce the chilli or throw in a whole to keep the flavour but don’t chop to significantly limit the heat

Serves 3


  • 4 tbsp Vegetable Oil
  • 1 Bay Leaf**
  • 1 Green Cardamom pod**
  • 2″ Cinnamon Stick**
  • Small piece of Mace**
  • 4 whole Cloves**
  • 4 whole Black Peppercorns**
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tsp Black Mustard Seeds
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 6 cloves Garlic, crushed
  • 1″ Ginger, grated
  • 2 Green Chilli, chopped (or whole, as preferred)
  • 1 can (400ml) Coconut Milk
  • 3 tbsp Full Fat Yoghurt (e.g., Greek Yoghurt)
  • 1 tbsp Poppy Seeds
  • 2 tbsp Cashew Nuts, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp Coriander Seeds, ground
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds, ground
  • 1 tsp Black Peppercorns, ground
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric
  • 1 tbsp dried Fenugreek Leaves (Methi)
  • 2 Chicken Breasts, chopped
  • Handful chopped Coriander leaves


  • Heat the oil in a pan and add the whole Garam Masala (Bay, whole Black Pepper, Mace, Cloves, Cinnamon & Cardamom) (** – Alternatively, add 2 tsp ground Garam Masala later in the cooking process) and the whole cumin & mustard seeds.  Cook for a few seconds until the cumin & mustard starts to pop
  • Add the onion & salt and stir well.  Cook for a few minutes to get a little colour on the onions, but DONT BURN THE SPICES!
  • Add the ginger, garlic and chilli and stir well before adding the coconut milk & yogurt
  • Stir well, then stir in the nuts & poppy seeds. Stir again and bring to a simmer.
  • Stir in the remaining spice powders & fenugreek leaves
  • Add the chicken stir well and cover.  Simmer gently until the chicken is cooked (15 minutes or so), stirring occasionally to prevent sticking
  • When ready, the nuts will have thickened the sauce.  Taste & adjust seasoning before adding coriander leaves (** and ground Garam Masala, if using) and serving

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