A Simple Chicken Curry

 I have just finished teaching a short cookery course. During the course we decided that the recipe we would cook more than any other is the ultimate reliable simple chicken curry. This keeps happening on the courses I teach. Everyone loves curry, it’s unanimous. I make it at least once a week and recently as a family we have been enjoying curry nights on a Saturday evening in a bid to get the children to love it as much as us parents.

simple chicken curry

A Simple Chicken Curry

 With the addition of the multi layered loveliness of parathas to soak up all the richly spiced gravy and a dollop or two of sweet mango chutney, the children are now accepting of a chicken curry. They are as yet unconvinced about lentils, so the dhal gets pushed to the side of the plate after one spoonful. I need to work on this. But the joy of tucking into a Saturday night curry feels like such an achievement after so many year of trying AND I have noticed I am no longer in need of adding loads of cream and coconut to the curry to make to edible for the kids. Now that’s progress.

Going back to the last cookery lesson, the reason it has stuck in my mind is down to the generosity of one of the learners. A Mauritian lady, a mother to five children. She was kind enough to bring chicken curry to feed us all. Individually packed up in little boxes, still warm and smelling divine. She unpacked this picnic, along with napkins, place-mats, salad and a coconut dessert for the girl who did not eat meat. 

This was and is the best curry I have eaten. Do you know why? Simply because this dish was made with a kindness of spirit. By someone who genuinely loves to cook, eat and share good food. A celebration of what a family dish should be, made by someone who cares about what her children eat and feeds them well, teaching her children as she cooks. And what a lesson to learn. If her five children only ever learn how to make this humble chicken curry they have achieved something great in life. A lesson to us all.

A Simple Chicken Curry
Serves 4
A richly spiced chicken curry perfect for any day of the week.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
  1. -4tbsp oil,
  2. -2 medium onions finely diced,
  3. -1tbsp ginger finely chopped,
  4. -1tbsp garlic finely chopped,
  5. -A large handful of fresh curry leaves,
  6. -4/5 chicken breasts cut into chunks or 8/10 skinned and de-boned chicken thighs cut into chunks,
  7. -2-3tbsp Caribbean hot curry powder (Rajah brand),
  8. -1tbsp tomato paste,
  9. -1 454g tin of tomatoes,
  10. -1 cup of water or chicken stock (approx 250ml),
  11. -10 new potatoes cooked and peeled,
  12. -1 bunch coriander roughly chopped
  1. 1. Warm the oil in a large saucepan then add in the onions, garlic and ginger. Fry them together on a medium heat until the onions begin to soften. This will take around 10 minutes. Next, add the curry leaves to the pan and continue to fry for a couple of minutes,
  2. 2. Stir in the curry powder and fry for 5 minutes adding a splash of water if the spices begin to catch on the bottom of the pan,
  3. 3. Now add the tomato paste to the pan along with the chopped up chicken and some seasoning. Cook the chicken until it is coated in the spices and beginning to colour, which will take around 5 minutes,
  4. 4. Pour in the chopped tomatoes and the water/stock. Bring the curry to the boil then turn it down to a simmer and cook over a medium heat (partly cover the pan with a lid) for abut 25 minutes,
  5. 5. Add in the cooked new potatoes and cook the curry for 5 more minutes adding a little extra water if the curry sauce has reduced too much,
  6. 6. Remove the curry from the heat and stir in the bunch of chopped coriander,
  7. 7. Serve the curry with plenty of boiled basmati rice and some mango chutney, naan breads or parathas and raita.
  1. This curry will feed a family of between 4-6 people along with the rice and the breads and dips.
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  1. Laura, what a lovely story, sharing food (and recipes) is just such a life enhancing experience for both the giver and the recipients.  The curry sounds delicious and well done on getting your children to eat it too.

  2. What a delicious looking curry you have made. And what a lovely story of kindness. Curry and kindness – the perfect combination :)

  3. We love curries too but like yours my children aren’t very keen on lentils (yet!).  Love the curry picnic story, what a lovely lady!

  4. Major craving for this now! And Mauritian too? Must try x

  5. I adore curries and gradually getting my six year old to enjoy them too. So long as they’re not too hot he likes them.

    Never made a paratha, to be honest I’m never sure what the difference is between these and naans?

    • Sarah, parathas are layered flatbreads which involve lots of folding, ruling and oiling of each layer. A bit like making puff pastry I guess but far easier and you can flavour them too. Best to get Ted to help!

  6. What a lovely post Laura, I love stories like this as it shows the kindness of others still burns bright! Our Indian neighbours sometimes bring us some delicious home cooked curry and trimmings over the road for us to try – SO kind and SO delicious!!!!
    Sadly my children are still curry averse, but you’ve inspired me to give it a try again… maybe if I dazzle them with nice accompaniments they’ll be more enthusiastic. I think once i”m out of my busy working phase, i’ll plan a friday night feast and give your recipe a whirl.

    • I must admit it has taken a few goes to get them to lie and enjoy the flavour of curry but you will be amazed how mango chutney and Indian breads help, not to mention poppadoms & minty dip!

  7. I’m definitely going to make this – sounds delicious, not too time-consuming and I love the warm story that goes with it. Also inspired to try again with curry with my daughter who’s currently quite suspicious of it.

  8. A lovely post – and you’re right everyone loves curry! Great recipe.

  9. I have to admit despite loving curry and having grown up eating so much of it we do not make it much at moment as our little ones are still averse to spice but you have inspired me to try again L x

  10. Wavatar DANIELLE VEDMORE says:

    Ooooh lovely – very similar to mine. Have never put potatoes in before though. Bet they go really well with it. Lush! x

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