An Indian favourite, this delicious aromatic chicken & onion curry has wonderful depth of flavour, and is perfect with rice or rotis.
Chicken Do Pyaza is a chicken curry in a masala onion sauce, it is rich and wonderfully fragrant.
What is do pyaza?
Originally inspired by Mughal and Persian cuisines, do pyaza or do piaza curries are found on menus throughout India.
In India, do (pronounced ‘dough’), means two and pyaza is onion.
Do pyaza refers to the onions being used in two ways for this dish. Diced onions are first fried with spices, and then larger pieces of onions are added towards the end.
It is a spicy dish but it is also slightly sweet from the onions.
The do pyaza style of cooking can also used for mutton, lamb, goat, beef, fish and vegetable dishes.
This recipe uses spices commonly used in the preparation of Indian food.
The whole spices are first lightly fried to release their oils, and the dry powders are added once the onion is browned.
Smash the green and black cardamoms before frying to release their wonderful flavours.
Then adjust the red chilli powder and green chillies according to taste. The quantities used here make a medium spicy curry.
For a milder heat, substitute the red chilli powder with this red chilli paste, as it uses milder Kashmiri red chillies, or leave out the green chillies.
- Lightly fry the whole spices to release their flavours which will flavour the oil.
- Add diced onions and cook till golden, then add the garlic, ginger and green chillies, and lightly sauté.
- Mix in the chopped tomatoes and cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Next, add the powdered spices (adding a little water to prevent sticking and burning), and cook for at least 5 minutes*.
- Stir in the chicken pieces – you could use small cuts of chicken on the bone (skin removed) or chicken breast cut into small cubes.
- Mix till the chicken is coated in the masala (spice) mixture, and cook uncovered for 15 minutes.
- Now add the yogurt and the larger cut pieces of onion to lightly cook for the remaining 5 minutes, and mix in the remaining garam masala.
*It is important to always make sure spices are cooked for at least 5 minutes, otherwise they won’t impart much flavour to the dish.
Transfer to an airtight container and keep in the fridge for 2-3 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.
Defrost in the fridge and reheat thoroughly before serving.
When reheating, you may need to add a tiny amount of water if it is too dry.
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Chicken Do Pyaza
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 whole black cardamoms smashed
- 4 green cardamom smashed
- 4 cloves
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 2 medium onions diced
- 2 inches ginger (1 tablespoon) grated or chopped
- 2 cloves garlic (1½ teaspoons) minced
- 3 green chilli chopped, adjust quantity to taste
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon powder
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon red chilli powder adjust according to taste
- 1.5 teaspoons cumin powder
- 1.5 teaspoons coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
- water as required
- 1 cup tomatoes chopped
- salt to taste
- 1 kg boneless chicken cut into small pieces, or small pieces of chicken on the bone
- 1 medium onion cut into large cubes and separated
- ¼ cup yogurt
- ½ teaspoon garam masala
- On a low-medium flame, heat the oil in a large saucepan and add green and black cardamom, cloves, peppercorns and cumin seeds. Allow them to gently fry for around half a minute, taking care that they do not burn.
- Add diced onions and sauté till lightly browned.
- Mix in the green chilli, garlic and ginger and sauté for a further minute.
- Then stir in chopped tomatoes and lightly fry for 2-3 minutes.
- Next, add cinnamon, turmeric, red chilli powder, cumin, coriander, and 1 teaspoon of garam masala powder. Add a couple of tablespoons of water, so that the masala powders do not stick to the bottom of the pan and burn. Cook the masala (spice) mixture for around 5 minutes, adding slightly more water if necessary.
- Add the chicken and mix well to ensure it is well coated in masala sauce. Cook uncovered for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in the yogurt and the larger pieces of onion, then sprinkle over the remaining garam masala. Mix together well and cook for a further 5 minutes. Serve with warm fluffy rice.
- Smash the green and black cardamoms before using for wonderful flavour.
- Lightly frying the whole spices releases their oils and flavours the oil.
- Cooking the masala powders slowly on a low-medium heat helps to release the oils and the flavours begin to come together.
- Make sure the spices are cooked for at least 5 minutes to add flavour to the dish.
- The masala powders will burn if the pan becomes dry, so add a little water now and again. After 5 minutes of cooking, the mixture should be a loose paste.
- You could either use small cuts of chicken on the bone (without skin) or chicken breast cut into small cubes.