Creamy Chicken Curry

Inspired by Nigella Lawson in Feast

Serves about 8-10 people

Don’t be daunted by this list of ingredients. It isn’t a complicated recipe, especially if you get all the ingredients ready beforehand.
2½cm fresh ginger, peeled
4 cloves garlic, peeled
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
Pinch of chilli flakes
4 tablespoons ground almonds
125ml water
5 cardamom pods, crushed to release seeds
1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
2 bay leaves
4 cloves
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 packs skinless, boneless chicken thighs
2 onions, finely chopped
200ml plain yoghurt
50g double cream
150ml chicken stock (or Marigold bouillon stock)
20g sultanas (optional)
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 tablespoon caster sugar
1 teaspoon salt
100g flaked almonds, toasted


  1. I use a baby food processor (the one I used to use to make pots of baby purée).
  2. Put the ginger, garlic, cumin, coriander and chilli into the blender. Blend to a paste. Add the ground almonds and water, and blend again. Keep to one side.
  3. Put the cardamom seeds, cinnamon sticks, bay leaves and cloves into a small bowl.
  4. Heat the oil in a large pan (a non-stick frying pan is good or a wide Le Creuset casserole pot).
  5. Cut the chicken pieces into 5cm chunks. Fry the chicken in the oil, sealing on both sides, then remove and put on a plate. If there are lots of juices left in the pan, tip them into a cup and reserve for later.
  6. Add a little more oil to the pan, gently fry the spices and add the finely chopped onion. Cook over a gentle heat until the onion is soft.
  7. Pour in the blended paste and cook gently until it begins to colour.
  8. Add the yoghurt, cream, stock and sultanas.
  9. Put the chicken back in the pan and add the juices. Sprinkle with garam masala, sugar and salt.
  10. Cover and cook over a gentle heat for about 20 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
  11. Serve with either white or brown rice and sprinkle with toasted almonds.