How to Make the Best Chicken Curry Ever

Words: Jess Spiro

Best-chicken-Curry-RecipeIt’s that time of year where you just can’t seem to warm up as if the marrow in your bones is frozen. At these times, only a deeply warming spice will do the trick, but sometimes mastering those spices can be tricky. Here are our tips for making a great chicken curry.

Treat Those Spices With Love

The trick to a great curry is a great curry mix. For the best results, use whole, fresh spices and toast them separately in a frying pan over medium heat. You’ll know they’re ready when you can smell their developed flavour.

Once toasted, remove from the heat and grind to a fine powder in a pestle and mortar or a spice grinder. If you can’t get your hands on whole spices, just make sure that you toast your powder very well when you add them to your aromatic base. Check our guide to spices here.

Warming Winter Spices

Get Your Base Sorted

As Italian dishes have the soffrito of celery, carrots and onion, and Cajun-Creole cooking has the ‘holy trinity’ of peppers, onions and celery, a curry has its own special flavour base.

A true curry starts with a mixture of finely chopped onion, garlic and ginger.

The secret to making a great curry is frying the onion, ginger and garlic until they are caramelised.

Best chicken curry

Choose The Best Part of The Chicken

Breast or leg isn’t really up for discussion here. The best part chicken cut for a curry is the thigh. It stays moist and has loads more flavour than the breast.

If you want to develop an even richer, meaty flavour, use bone-in thighs. Just make sure to warn anyone eating the curry and have loads of napkins on handpicking the meat off the bone is (deliciously) messy work.


Leave The Curry Overnight

As with any spiced dish, being allowed to rest overnight vastly improves the flavour. If you’re making curry for a big dinner party, really try and make it the day before. You won’t believe the difference.

Best chicken Curry

Don’t Skimp on Spices For Fear of Heat

If you’re holding back on those spices because you’re worried about the curry being too hot, we have some advice for you. Don’t. The difference between a mediocre curry and a truly great one is that intense spice.

If you think you’re going to burn your guests’ faces off, simply have an array of sambals on offer. Cucumber raita, chutney and tomato salad are all great ways to cool a hot curry.

Try these chicken curry recipes:

Chicken Korma Bunny Chows

The quintessental South African Durban-style way to enjoy curry.

Recipe for Chicken Korma Bunny Chows

Best Ever Butter Chicken

Need we say more?

Recipe for Butter Chicken

Malay Chicken Curry

Sweet and spicy with flavours of the Cape.

Recipe for Malay Chicken Curry

Chicken Satay Curry

Wonderfully aromatic and perfect for a cold evening.

Recipe for Chicken Satay Curry

Instant Pot Chicken Curry

Curry in a hurry with an exectirc pressure cooker.

Instant Pot Chicken Curry

Thai Chicken & Carrot Curry Soup

Take things east with this bowl of yum.

Recipe for Thai Chicken & Carrot Curry Soup

Check out our handy cook’s guide to spices here. 

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