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Chicken korma recipe | shahi chicken korma curry

Chicken korma recipe | shahi chicken korma curry – a recipe of Mughlai style shahi murgh curry. Qorma is an Urdu word, considered to be an old preparation of Afghans, later passed on to the Indian subcontinent through Mughals.

Chicken Korma recipe | shahi chicken korma curry, with step by step pictures. Korma is a creamy, less spicy, slow-cooked meat or vegetable curry, in a well-blended cashew-almond paste with curd or yogurt. It can be made with chicken, mutton, lamb, or beef. Even Bangladesh and Pakistan also have similar korma recipes.

Mostly in royal cuisine, fresh cream or milk was used to make a more rich and thick white creamy gravy of korma. However, South Indian states like Kerala and Hyderabad replace those ingredients with coconut milk as per their taste. Though I don’t use any one of these in my recipe.

shahi chicken korma curry

Chicken Korma goes best with roti, paratha, biryani, pulao, or simple white rice. Being a Bengali I enjoy this korma with my Kolkata style chicken biryani or our Bengali white pulao too. Korma doesn’t belong to the list of healthy chicken curry. As the usage of ghee and cashew nuts made huge calories in it.

This korma recipe is inspired by an Australian based Indian chef. Who runs a restaurant of Indian food in Australia for years and this chicken korma was the specialty of his eatery. He shared his own Awadhi style qorma recipe for a television cooking show. As it happened long years back so unfortunately I forgot his name and exact identity too, to thank him. As I followed his recipe at home and that was one of the best qormas I ever had before.

Here I used almost the same ingredient as well as the flavor he used in his recipe. However, I never wanted to copy his recipe. So I applied my own cooking style, even to make a difference between these two, I used a special korma masala.

Being a traditional recipe, korma takes more time to get ready by the slow cooking method. However, for making its quick and easy version, a pressure cooker is a very good option. You can save the last 20 mins cooking time by making one whistle on high flame in the pressure cooker.

indian chicken korma recipe

Even here I followed almost the same method I’ve used in my Bengali chicken rezala recipe. Basically, korma and rezala both are similar in taste with almost the same cooking method. Even both are Mughlai recipes with less spicy, nuts- yogurt-based gravy flavored by garam masala and kewra, rose water. The only difference I can notice is the use of coriander powder and little turmeric in korma is missing in our Kolkata style rezala. That makes a little difference in taste in both recipes.

Except for this recipe, you may also check Kolkata’s Mughlai restaurant-style chicken cheap recipe too from my website.

Try this korma curry at home. I hope my step by step method will help you to do it perfectly. Please let me know your valuable feedback about this recipe by writing it down in the comment section below.

Chicken korma recipe | shahi chicken korma curry

Prep time: 10 mins

Cook time: 50 mins

Total time: 1 hr

Served for: 6-7 people

Course: Dinner

Cuisine: Mughlai/ Awadhi

Author: Moumita Paul

Ingredients of chicken korma

1 cup= 250 ml

  • 1.5 kg of chicken
  • 3 medium onion
  • 1 cup curd or yogurt
  • 2 tsp garlic paste
  • 1 1/2 tsp ginger paste
  • 18-20 cashew nuts
  • 3 green chilies
  • 3 tbsp ghee
  • 4 tbsp oil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4-5 green cardamom
  • 4-5 cloves
  • 8 peppercorns
  • 1-inch cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp kewra water
  • 3-4 drops of rose essence (optional)
  • 2-3 drops mitha attar(optional)
  • 3-4 cups of water

korma masala

  • 8 green cardamom
  • 1 mace or javitri
  • 1 tsp shahi jeera
  • 5 peppercorns

How to make chicken korma recipe

Making of korma masala

  • Take 8 green cardamoms, 1 mace, 1 tsp shahi jeera, and 5 peppercorns in a small blender jar. 
masala ingredients of chicken korma
  • Ground the spices well to make a fine powder out of it. Though little cardamom skin may exist but don’t worry. Keep it aside to use it later in this recipe.
homemade chicken korma masala

Marination of chicken for korma

  • In a mixing bowl, first, take cleaned and washed chicken pieces, add 1 tsp red chili powder, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, and salt.
adding spices to the chicken
  • Then add 1/2 cup of curd or yogurt in the same mixing bowl and mix it nicely all together.
mixing yogurt
  • Next, add the ginger-garlic paste(mentioned above) and again mix it well and then leave it for 30 mins to get marinated.
adding ginger-galic paste

How to make chicken korma

  • Heat a pan on medium flame with 3 tbsp of ghee in it. Let it gets hot.
adding ghee in the pan
  • Add finely sliced onion to the pan and fry it till gets golden brown. Remove it from the pan and cool it down.
frying onion to make beresta
  • Take fried onion with 18-20 pieces of cashew nuts and the rest half cup of yogurt in a blender jar. Blend it well by adding little water to get a smooth paste of it. Keep it aside for later use.
curd, fried onion and kaju to make its paste
  • Take the same pan and heat it well. Then add bay leaves, cinnamon stick, green cardamom, and few black peppercorns in the ghee.
whole garam masala in the pan
  • Once the aroma comes from the spices, add the marinated chicken to the pan. Stir it well.
marinated chicken in the pan
  • Fry marinated chicken in ghee for 5 mins in low to the medium flame by stirring it frequently.
frying chicken in ghee to make this shahi qorma
  • In the meantime, add slit green chilies to the pan.
add green chillies
  • Then add coriander powder to the pan. Give a quick stir and cook it for 2-3 mins. 
adding coriander powder to chicken to make kurma
  • After 2-3 mins of cooking, add 1 cup of water to the pan and mix it well. Raise the heat to the high flame to let the water boil.
adding 1 cup of water to the pan to make this indian chicken curry
  • Once the water starts boiling cover the pan with a lid. Keep the flame again on medium and let it cook for 10 mins.
cover the pan to easily cook chicken to make this qorma recipe
  • After 10 mins, remove the lid and add the onion, cashew, yogurt paste prepared earlier. Mix it well and cook it for 1 min.
adding white colour paste with brown onion, yogurt and kaju to make korma
  • Then again add 2 cups of water to the pan and mix it well. Let the gravy boil. 
after adding 2 cups of water
  • Once the gravy starts boiling add 3/4 tsp of salt to it and mix it well.
adding salt to enhance the taste of the gravy
  • Then again cover the pan and slow down the flame to its minimum and cook the chicken for 20 mins. Stir it frequently.
covering the pan to cook the chicken nicely to make this indian korma curry
  • After 20 mins add 3/4 tsp korma masala powder to the gravy. 
adding special korma masala to make chicken gravy
  • Then add 1 & 1/2 tsp kewra water and 3 drops rose essence or 1 tsp of rose water into the gravy.
adding essences to the gravy to make flavours of lucknow style korma
  • Lastly, add 2-3 drops of mitha attar(though optional but must in few Mughlai dishes). Again cook it for  2-3 mins by covering the pan on low flame by stirring it frequently.
adding Mughlai mitha attar to make this chicken korma curry
  • After 2-3 mins of cooking turn off the heat and chicken korma will be ready to serve.
authentic chicken korma is ready


  • Don’t fry the chicken in high heat as the meat get hard and chewy after cooking.
  • Except for cashew nuts, you may use half-half cashew and almond too. For making South Indian style korma you may also add 1/2 cup of coconut milk too in this recipe.
  • Kewra water is a must added flavor in Mughlai style korma but you may skip it too if you don’t like. But for Lucknow or Awadhi style korma, must use three essences mentioned above with the same quantity. As more use of flavor can spoil the taste.
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Chicken korma recipe | shahi chicken korma curry
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