Bangladeshi-Style Creamy Chicken Korma with Crispy Shallots

By • January 29, 2011 18 Comments

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Author Notes: This Bangladeshi version of korma closely adheres to the refined culinary traditions of the Mughal Empire of South Asia, with its exotic spices like the mighty cardamom and cinnamon. It's also reminiscent of its Persian roots with nuts, dried fruit, and cream (in this case tangy yogurt). There are whole spices and whole green chiles, which lend great layers of flavor without the heat of traditional curries. People who are hesitant with South Asian food and even the pickiest of children tend to adore this dish. Dazzle your family and friends with this scrumptious recipe that highlights the royal culinary history of Bangladesh. {Recipe adapted from my dear Bangladeshi friend, Lani Siddique} - onetribegourmetonetribegourmet

Food52 Review: Every once in a while you come across a recipe that makes you believe in alchemy. I wasn’t really convinced that this would come together like the picture, but magically it did. The flavors are warm and subtly spicy with lots of buttery overtones. I suspect that is from all the ghee, olive oil, and yogurt. But if you were to lighten up the recipe, I doubt you would get a result even close to this, so I didn’t try. This would make a great party dish since you can make it ahead. I used a 4 ½ lb chicken and deboned right before serving.Helen's All Night Diner

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Serves 6

  • 1 whole skinless chicken, cut into 10 pieces
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt, beaten well
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger paste
  • 1 teaspoon fresh garlic paste
  • 3 tablespoons ghee
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 8 cardamom pods
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons ground almonds
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons golden raisins, plus more for garnish
  • 4 Thai bird chiles
  • 2-3 tablespoons slivered almonds
  • 2-3 shallots, thinly sliced & fried crisp
  1. Trim and wash chicken pieces well and drain thoroughly. Put the chicken in a large bowl and mix with the yogurt, garlic, and ginger. Marinate for an hour or up to one day.
  2. Saute the onions on medium heat in the oil and ghee/butter until golden brown. Add cinnamon, cardamom, and bay leaf, stirring until fragrant.
  3. Add marinated chicken and salt, raising the temperature to medium high. Stir frequently until water and juices separate from the chicken to create a gravy. Consistently monitor that nothing sticks to the bottom of the pan or gets brown, about 10 minutes. Once the liquid has reduced, add a few tablespoons of hot water slowly (maintaining the bubbling of gravy) until chicken is partially submerged. The amount of water will vary because some chickens naturally give off more liquid than others. Bring to a boil and then lower to medium heat so that the gravy is at a heavy simmer but not boiling.
  4. Cover and stir occasionally. Once oil droplets start to rise to the surface (about 20-30 minutes) and the gravy is reducing, add lemon juice, ground almonds, sugar, raisins, and chiles. Check to see if sugar has balanced out the tartness of the yogurt. Cover and cook another 5 minutes on medium-low and remove from the heat.
  5. Optional: Sprinkle with rose water. Garnish with almonds, more raisins, and fried shallots. Serve with plain pulao, biriyani or steamed basmati or jasmine rice.

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