A Chicken Curry from a Durban girl

Last year I posted a few tweets explaining curry and how to make various curries. I’m always happy to take on suggestions and input from followers, friends and just about anybody else. One twitter follower is the awesome Bhavna (@bhavmaharaj), she messged me saying that the world of curry is a lot more complex than how I have simplified it for my followers. I then asked her to put her money where her mouth is and to please share some recipes with me! She was gracious enough to oblige. This is her take on a chicken curry, Durban style.

Chicken curry


  • 1 whole jointed chicken (skin removed) OR a tray of 8 skinless drumsticks and thighs
  • 3 medium potatoes – peeled and cut into quarters (keep them in water so they don’t go brown)
  • 1 large tomato – chopped into small pieces
  • 1 large onion – chopped into small pieces
  • 3 green chillies split in halves OR dried red chillies (you can add fewer or none at all if your don’t like it hot)
  • 6 large cloves of garlic chopped very fine OR 1 large tablespoon of crushed garlic
  • 1 large tablespoon of grated or crushed ginger
  • 3 heaped tablespoons of masala/curry powder
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of garam masala (it adds flavour but you don’t have to add it if you don’t have any)
  • 6 curry leaves (also an optional ingredient if you can find them)
  • Quarter cup of oil (chicken needs the extra oil because it is a lean meat)
  • 2 cups of water
  • Salt to taste ( I use about a tablespoon of rough sea salt but it’s up to you)
  • A small handful of fresh coriander (dhania) for garnish


  1. Heat the oil on medium heat in a heavy bottom pot.
  2. Add your chicken, salt, garlic and ginger.
  3. Cook on medium heat with the lid on, until the chicken is almost cooked – about 10minutes. You can tell by poking the chicken to the bone and if the liquid is clear, you’re ready for the next step.
  4. Add your garam masala and curry powder and stir for about 30 seconds to quickly fry it. Add a cup of water.
  5. Keep a tablespoon of onions aside and add the rest to the pot.
  6. Cook until the onions are see-through and half the water has evaporated. It should take about 5 minutes.
  7. Now, add the rest of your onions, tomatoes, curry leaves, chillies, potatoes and cook with the lid on for another 8 to 10 minutes. Check halfway through the time to make sure your curry isn’t sticking to the bottom of the pot and add water if it is. You can simmer it slowly on a lower heat if you are not in a rush. Just make sure the potatoes are cooked all the way by poking a sharp knife into the centre. Once it is soft and the gravy has thickened, your curry is ready!
  8. Sprinkle on your chopped, fresh coriander and serve with boiled rice, naan, rotis or fresh bread. If you want to make a bunny chow, make sure the gravy is slightly thick by adding less water, otherwise youy bread will soak it up and collapse. Enjoy!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s