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28 Oct 2015


SSI food: Sameera’s Qorma for Diwaili

SSI case managers Sameera Purkis and Sanjot Virk at Community Kitchen.

“In these modern times, the younger generation like to have a good time and Diwali is a fun festival of dancing, eating and fireworks,” she said.

“Everyone wants to enjoy it.”

Sameera promised that this Qorma recipe is easy, and that once you’ve tried it you will never buy bottled curry sauce again.

Chicken Qorma

Chicken Qorma

Serves 4 – 6


1 whole chicken, skin off, cut into 14 pieces

2 x medium sized onions (finely sliced)

3 x medium sized tomatoes (quartered)

2 x black cardamoms

4 x green cardamoms

4 x cloves

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 x cinnamon stick (crushed)

1 tsp black peppercorns

1 cup plain Greek yogurt

½ tsp turmeric powder

3/4 tsp (or to taste) kashmiri red chilli powder

1 ½  tsp coriander powder

1 tsp garam masala powder

1 ½ tbls ginger and garlic paste

Salt to taste

Vegetable or olive oil for cooking: about half a cup

Fresh coriander and large green chillies (finely chopped) for garnish

Prep: 30 min cook: 30 min


Heat the oil in a wide pot on medium high heat. Fry the onion together with cumin seeds, black peppercorns, cloves, black and green cardamons and cinnamon until the onion turns golden. Stir continuously with a wooden spoon to stop onion from burning.

Once the onion is golden, strain the oil through a sieve over a bowl to collect oil. Press the onion mixture in the sieve with a wooden spoon to squeeze oil out of it (reserve for later). Microwave the tomatoes for 2 to 3 minutes until they become a little soft. Put the cooled onion mixture, tomatoes and yoghurt in a blender and blend until it turns to a fine paste.

Put the strained oil back into the pot and heat it on medium to high heat. Add garlic ginger and paste and fry for about 5 seconds. Add chilli, coriander, turmeric and garam masala powders and fry for a further 20 seconds.

Add chicken and saute until chicken turns a little brown. Add the onion, tomato and yogurt paste and mix it well to coat the chicken. Keep stirring with a wooden spoon for about 5 minutes.

Cover the pot and bring the heat down to medium low. Check at 15 minute intervals until the chicken is cooked.

Garnish and serve with naan bread or basmati rice.

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