Authentic Chicken Curry

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Authentic Chicken Curry is, without doubt, one of our most favorite dishes of all time.

The spices are warm and comforting and so very satisfying. You just have to taste this dish to understand how wonderful it is.  And it makes the perfect weeknight dinner!

Authentic chicken curry in an orange bowl


Most of the ingredients in this dish can be found in a well-stocked supermarket, but if not, a trip to an Asian, or specifically an Indian, food market might be in order. If that’s not possible, everything is easily ordered onliine.

Watch us show you how easy it is to make this incredible Authentic Chicken Curry!

Not long ago, we lived in a very culturally diverse part of the Northeast, United States. And many of our neighbors were Indian.  They were some of the kindest and most lovely people we have ever known.

And don’t get me started on their cuisine!  Curry has such an amazing history and steeped in culture!

They are part of a culture where is food is at every facet of their lives.  It is a beautiful thing.  The delicious aromas emanating from their windows at almost any given hour of any given day are practically intoxicating.

I love using star anise with the other aromatics. The taste is subtle but deepens the flavor nicely.

Onion, peppers and star anise cooking for authentic chicken curry

I’ve been making a version of Chicken Curry for many years now.  And I’m always a little embarrassed to assert that I have an authentic recipe.  But it is one that I have honed over the years and learned a lot from neighbors, local Indian eateries, and markets.

Toasting the seeds in a hot skillet brings out their oils and add so much more flavor.

Then I just pull out my trusty spice grinder (formerly a coffee grinder) and ground the spices.

Toasting seeds in a skillet for authentic curry chicken


The colors of the spices are warm and inviting.

The smell is intoxicatingly good.

And the taste? Oh, just wait.

A bowl full of colorful spices for authentic curry chicken

Chicken is the perfect protein for the spices and vegetables.

After adding oil to the spices, liberally rub the paste all over the chicken.

This is the real deal.

Chicken pieces coasted with spices in a bowl for authentic curry chicken

Once you begin cooking that marinated chicken, you’ll immediately smell the curry and other spices. Authentic chicken curry is pure comfort food.

It is just incredible.

We could eat a bowl of this cooked chicken with no problem at all. But when served over perfectly prepared basmati rice, it is perfection.

Cooked chicken with a bay leaf for authentic curry chicken

Our Authentic Chicken Curry may not match our amazing neighbors’ version, but it’s pretty darn good, if we do say so ourselves!  It is, and always has been, one of the Loon’s favorite dishes.  And mine, too, of course. 

Some of  our other favorite curry dishes include:

One bite of this Authentic Curry Chicken dish, and we’re pretty certain you’ll be a believer in good-quality curry.

An orange bowl filled with basmati rice and authentic curry chicken

Authentic chicken curry in an orange bowl

Authentic Chicken Curry

This Authentic Chicken Curry is so comforting and satisfying. The heat level is not intense at all. I just love making the curry from scratch. It's not difficult, and makes all the difference in the world. A perfect weeknight meal, or even a special dinner party dish (you can easily double the recipe if feeding a crowd).
4.95 from 19 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Indian Chicken
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Chicken dinner, Curry
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 280kcal


  • 2 tsp corainder seeds
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp ground turmeric
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tbsp ginger finely chopped, or grated
  • 1 tsp fresh jalapenos ribs and seeds removed, finely chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 star anise*
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch bite-size pieces
  • 2 medium tomatoes cored, seeded, and roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk^
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1/4 cup unsalted roasted cashews roughly chopped, for topping the dish
  • 1 tbsp fresh cilantro chopped, for topping the dish
  • Prepared Basmati rice for serving (see recipe below)
  • *Available at many supermarkets or specialty gourmet markets, or at Asian markets


  • Toast the coriander and cumin seeds in a medium skillet over medium-high heat until they start to crackle, about 3 minutes.
  • Use a spice grinder, or a coffee bean grinder, and grind the toasted seeds.
  • In a large bowl, stir together the ground seeds, turmeric, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper (each), cayenne pepper, curry powder, and oil and mix well to form a paste.
  • Add the chicken to the bowl and stir to coat evenly.
  • Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.
  • In a saute pan, over high heat, melt the butter.
  • Add the onion and saute until soft, about 4 minutes.
  • Add the garlic, ginger, jalapeño peppers, bay leaves and star anise and continue to saute until the onion is lightly golden, about 5 - 7 minutes.
  • Add the chicken and cook until opaque, about 5 minutes
  • Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until they soften, about 2 minutes.
  • Stir in the coconut milk and 1/2 teaspoon salt and bring to a gentle boil.
  • Reduce the heat to low, simmer until the chicken is very tender, about 20 minutes.
  • Stir in the lemon juice and simmer for 5 minutes longer.
  • Remove the star anise and bay leaves, and discard.
  • Transfer to serving bowl, and top with cashews and cilantro.
  • Serve with basmati rice (recipe below)


  • Place 1 cup of basmati rice in a large bowl and fill with room temp water. Swirl your hand through the water and the rice for about 1 minute, the rice water will get cloudy. Then carefully pour off the water, taking care not to lose any rice. Repeat this washing process until the water runs clear, usually about 3 or 4 times. (this step is very important!)
  • Fill up the bowl 1 more time and let the rice soak for 30 minutes.
  • Drain the rice.
  • Fill a medium saucepan with 1 3/4 cups water, a pinch of salt, and bring to a boil.
  • Add the rice, stir, and wait until the water comes back to a full boil. When it does, turn the heat down as low as it can go,and then cover.
  • Cook for 15 minutes.
  • Fluff with fork.
  • *Technique and recipe courtesy of Aarti Sequeira.



Calories: 280kcal
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