Chicken korma

Chicken korma

The Curry Guy
4 or more as part of a multi-course meal

There are hundreds of recipes for authentic Indian korma. Korma, which means ‘braising’ in Hindi, is actually a style of cooking where meat and vegetables are braised in a sealed pot with a little liquid. The sauce can be creamy, nutty and mild like our British kormas but they can also be quite spicy and cooked in stock or water. What we know as a korma may share the same name but it isn’t really a korma at all.

I prefer to use a combination of block coconut and coconut flour to give my kormas a nice coconut flavour, but you could substitute thick coconut milk, adding it with the first batch of base curry sauce and letting it cook down to your preferred consistency (you might want to reduce the amount of base curry sauce). Never use desiccated coconut or your sauce will become grainy

My recipe will achieve a nice yellow colour as expected. You might like to add yellow food colouring powder if you desire the more intense yellow colour found at many restaurants.


Quantity Ingredient
4 tablespoons ghee, rapeseed oil
or seasoned oil
2.5cm piece of cinnamon stick or cassia bark
4 green cardamom pods, lightly bruised
1 teaspoon Garlic and ginger paste
3 tablespoons sugar, to taste
6 tablespoons ground almonds
2 tablespoons coconut flour
700ml Base curry sauce (large batch)
100g block coconut
or 4 extra tablespoons coconut flour
800g raw chicken breast, cut on the diagonal into 5mm slices
or Pre-cooked stewed chicken
1 tablespoon Garam masala
125ml single cream, plus a little more to finish
1 tablespoon rose water, or to taste
2 tablespoons cold butter (optional)


  1. Heat the ghee or oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. When small bubbles begin to appear, toss in the cinnamon stick and cardamom pods. Let the whole spices flavour the oil for about 30 seconds then stir in the garlic and ginger paste. Fry for about 20 seconds before adding the sugar, ground almonds and coconut flour. Mix into the oil and pour in about 250ml of the base curry sauce; it will bubble up nicely. Break up the block coconut, if using block, and add it to the simmering sauce. It will dissolve and give your korma a nice light yellow tone.
  2. Pour in the rest of the base curry sauce, then add the chicken. If using raw chicken, press it right into the sauce so that it cooks quickly and evenly. You can add a little more base curry sauce if you need to, as it will boil down anyway. Swirl in the garam masala.
  3. When your chicken is cooked/heated through, remove the cardamom pods and cinnamon, and stir in the cream. Add the rose water and finish with the butter, if you want. Season with salt to taste and check the sweetness, adding more sugar if needed.
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