Sweet chicken curry

Sweet chicken curry

Cooking from the Heart
Mark Roper

Serve the curry with plain rice, accompanied by a mixed salad with a lemon and thyme vinaigrette dressing.


Quantity Ingredient
10 chicken thighs and drumsticks
3 tablespoons olive oil
5 cm knob fresh ginger, coarsely grated
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 cm knob fresh turmeric, coarsely grated
or 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 1/2 onions, finely diced
1 tablespoon mustard seeds
2 tablespoons coriander seeds or ground coriander
2 tablespoon cumin seeds or ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
440g canned diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon sea salt
440ml canned coconut milk
1 lemon, juiced
coriander, to garnish (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 160°C.
  2. Lightly roast the chicken in the oven for 1 hour, then allow it to cool. Refrigerate the chicken, then remove the fat, but reserve the jelly-like aspic that collects around it.
  3. Heat the oil in an 8-litre cast-iron pot over medium heat. Sauté the ginger, garlic and turmeric until soft, then add the onion and fry until golden. Scrape the mixture to one side.
  4. Move the pot so the heat is underneath the empty side of the pot, then add the mustard seeds to the vacant side. Cover and cook until the seeds pop, then add the coriander, cumin and paprika and fry for another 15–20 minutes.
  5. Stirring constantly, stir in the diced tomatoes. Reduce the heat if necessary, so that the tomato doesn’t stick and the spices don’t burn, then cook until the liquid has reduced to a thick sauce. (If the mixture begins to stick, add a tablespoon of water and stir rapidly.)
  6. Mix in the salt, then add the chicken, coating it well. Stirring constantly, pour in 1 cup water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, then cover and simmer for 20 minutes, or until the chicken is very tender.
  7. Stir in the coconut milk and cook for another 20 minutes, or until the liquid thickens.
  8. Add the lemon juice, garnish with coriander, if desired, and serve.
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