Chicken Curry made over a fire

A sous chef friend of mine made this for us a while back on a cold winters evening and was kind enough to share his magnificent recipe with me.  The aromatic smells tantalise your nose and the flavour is so moreish.  It is one of those meals you want to have extra left over, just so you can enjoy it all again.  Thanks Jay!

Chicken Curry made over a fire



5 cloves garlic
4 large onions
1 inch of fresh ginger
100ml olive oil
6 cardamom pods
2 sticks whole cinnamon
4 cloves
3 star anise
4 tbsp black mustard seeds
2 tsp turmeric
3 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp ground cumin
3 bay leaves
Handful fresh coriander
1kg chicken pieces
(legs & thighs skin removed)
Olive oil


  1. Make sure you have a good fire on the go and some spare charcoal to keep it going while your curry is simmering.
  2. Finely chop the onions, garlic, ginger and coriander together.
  3. Place your potjie pot over the fire and allow it to get hot. Add 100ml olive oil.
  4. Once the oil is hot add your finely chopped mixture to the pot along with all your spices.
  5. Stir well making sure the spices and the onion mixture combine well to make a nice dark paste. The darkness comes from allowing the spices to cook without liquid.
  6. When the mixture starts to become dry and sticking to the bottom of the pot add 1 cup of water. By adding the water it removes all the bits stuck to the bottom and puts the flavour back in.
  7. When the water has reduced by half add the chicken.
  8. Mix the chicken well, making sure it is all coated with the paste in the pot.
  9. Once well mixed, add enough water to just cover the chicken.
  10. Allow it to come to the boil and then lift the pot to reduce the heat and allow the curry to simmer.
  11. Simmer until the chicken is cooked and the sauce has thickened.
  12. If the chicken is cooked and the sauce is not thickened, add a little corn flour to help the process along, but not too much.

Serve with basmati rice and desiccated coconut, sliced banana, cucumber riata (grated cucumber in yoghurt), chopped chilli and chopped tomato and onion.

Submitted by:  Jason Neil-Boss, Johannesburg


3 thoughts on “Chicken Curry made over a fire

  1. Wow, sounds fantastic. My friend recently bought me a bucket BBQ which I was saving for a trip to the beach but I think that this recipe may be a good excuse to use it!

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