The ultimate chicken korma recipe

Are you after an impressive curry to wow guests with, or just a new recipe to add to your midweek repertoire? Whether it’s a special occasion or a family feast, this deliciously creamy royal chicken korma from Madhur Jaffrey’s Ultimate Curry Bible is sure to be a hit. Put down the jar of pre-made curry paste and give this recipe a try…


Madhur Jaffrey’s royal chicken korma recipe


  • 1 tbsp saffron threads

  • 4 tbsp warm double cream

  • 12 cardamon pods

  • 4 cinnamon sticks

  • 6 bay leaves

  • 2.3kg skinless chicken thighs

  • 2 onions sliced into fine rings

  • 8 garlic cloves, crushed

  • 2 tbsp fresh grated ginger

  • 4 tbsp sultanas

  • 4 tbsp whole almonds

  • 2 tbsp ground coriander

  • 2 tbsp ground cumin

  • 250ml plain yoghurt

  • 2 tsp salt

  • 2 tsp cayenne pepper

  • 1/2 tsp garam masala

  • 120ml water


  1. Add the saffron to the warm double cream and mix until it turns a warm yellow colour. Set aside.

  2. Add the cinnamon, bay leaves and cardamon pods to a hot pan with a generous glug of olive oil. The spices will begin to warm up and you will begin to smell the heat and spice aroma.

  3. Then, in the same pan, fry the chopped chicken thighs until they start to brown and set aside.

  4. Add in the sliced onion, crushed garlic and grated ginger and cook for a few minutes.

  5. Next, add in your whole almonds and sultanas.

  6. Add the cumin and coriander which will provide the essential fragrant heat for the dish.

  7. Move the meat and juices back into the pan and add in the plain yoghurt, stirring in with the spices.

  8. Add the salt and cayenne pepper and turn up the heat allowing the sauce to reduce and cling to the meat so that the flavour disperses.

  9. Stir in the saffron cream and 120ml of water to finish off your creamy sauce.

  10. Stir in half a teaspoon of garam masala, cover the pan with its lid, reduce the heat and let it simmer for five minutes before serving with basmati rice.