Chicken tarkari
2019-03-01 00:00:00 -

Food by Bal Krishna Shrestha


Chicken tarkari


This is a very simple and home-style Nepalese chicken tarkari, a curry that’s one of the many thali-style meals in Nepal. It consists of steamed rice accompanied by a selection of curries (vegetarian and meat) with chutney, daal, spinach, salad and yogurt. In the Nepalese language its variously called daal, bhat and tarkari, and it is generally eaten with either rice or roti. The fenugreek seeds used in this dish are a unique ingredient which gives the curry more of a distinct Nepalese flavour.



Serves 4

75ml mustard oil (or rapeseed oil)

1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds

3 bay leaves

1/2 tsp crushed cloves

1/2 tsp cardamom seeds

300g sliced white onion

600g chicken fillets, cut into big cubes

1/2 tsp ground turmeric

1 tbsp ginger and garlic puree

1 tbsp ground cumin

1 tbsp ground coriander

1 tsp ground chilli

150g plum tomatoes, chppped

200ml water

Salt to taste

1 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped

1 tbsp spring onion, chopped


Heat the oil in a wide, heavy base pan with the fenugreek seeds. Cook until they turn dark brown.


Add the sliced onion, cloves, cardamom, bay leaves, ginger and garlic paste to the pan.


Stir occasionally until slightly brown. Be careful not to burn the onions.


Add the cubed chicken fillets and turmeric and fry for 5 minutes. Add the chilli, cumin, coriander, salt and chopped tomato, and half of the chopped coriander and spring onion. Mix well.


Pour hot water into the pan and cover with a lid. Cook for another 10 minutes.


Finally, sprinkle with the rest of the coriander and spring onion to the curry. Check the seasoning and serve with steamed rice.

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