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Bengali-style chicken curry recipe

This lower-fat take on Bengali curry also includes extra green peppers to help you get your 5 A Day. The fiery spices introduce so much flavour that you're also less likely to add salt.

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 40 mins
Serves 4

Nutritional information

Per serving (1/4 recipe)

  • 428kcal / 1,806kJ
  • 26g protein
  • 62g carbohydrate, of which 5.6g sugars
  • 7g fat, of which 1.1g saturates
  • 6.7g fibre
  • 0.16g salt



  • 500g skinless chicken pieces, on the bone
  • 1 teaspoon red chilli powder, or to taste
  • 1 small onion, pureéd
  • 6 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 thumb-sized piece ginger, crushed
  • half a teaspoon of ground garam masala

Curry sauce

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3 cloves
  • 3 cardamom pods
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • half a teaspoon of red chilli powder (optional)
  • quarter teaspoon of turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons mild paprika powder
  • 200ml (about a mugful) hot water
  • 2 green bell peppers, deseeded and cut into chunks

To serve

  • 300g basmati rice (cooked according to packet instructions)


  1. Mix the chicken with all the marinade ingredients in a large bowl and set aside.


    Removing the skin from chicken helps you cut down on saturated fat.

  2. Heat the oil in a large non-stick pan. Add the cloves, cardamom, cinnamon sticks and bay leaves and allow to sizzle for a minute, until fragrant.

  3. Add the onions and cumin seeds, and stir-fry over a high heat for about 10 minutes.

  4. Mix in the chilli powder, turmeric, paprika and chicken. Cook on a high heat for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent burning.


    Use more red chilli powder and less paprika if you like your curry hot!

  5. Add the hot water, then lower the heat to medium, cover and cook for 20 minutes.

  6. Add the green peppers, cover and cook for a further 5 or 10 minutes, until the peppers are tender and the chicken juices run clear. Allow to cool for a couple of minutes, then serve with a portion of rice.


    You can save time with this recipe by asking your butcher to cut the chicken into smaller pieces – they will cook in 20 to 25 minutes.