Roasted Marinated Chicken with Tomato Curry and Toasted Almonds

Oven roasted Chicken on the bone marinated in yogurt, spices and garlic. Served with a delicious medium spicy tomato based curry sauce and garnished with toasted almonds.

I love it when you design a recipe and it tastes just as you had hoped, this is definingly one of those occasions. The roasted chicken on the bone marinated in yogurt, garlic, turmeric, chilli, fennel seeds and garam masala is wonderfully moist and flavoursome. The medium spicy curry sauce made from tomato, onion, chilli, garlic, ginger, bay leaf, mustard seeds, cardamom, cloves and some butter is the perfect accompaniment to the chicken. A garnish of coriander leaf and some toasted almonds complete this dish.

Serve with choice of rice or Indian breads.


Serves Two

Preparation time 15 minutes (plus 2-3 hours for marinating chicken)

Cooking time 35 minutes


Ingredients and method

For the marinated chicken:

2 large chicken thighs, on the bone – remove skin and membrane

6-8 dessert spoons Greek yogurt

1/2 tsp cumin seeds

1/2 tsp chilli powder

1/2 tsp ground turmeric

1/2 tsp garam masala

1/4 tsp fennel seeds

1/2 tsp salt

3 cloves garlic – thinly sliced

Method: Combine the yogurt, garlic, salt and spices in a bowl and mix well. Add the chicken and mix well until covered in the marinade, cover bowl and put in a fridge for at least two hours (overnight is even better).

To cook the chicken, remove the bowl from fridge 30 minutes before cooking to bring to room temperature. Heat your oven to 200°c, place the marinated chicken in a roasting tin and cook for 35 minutes. Rest the chicken for 5 minutes before serving.

For the curry sauce:

1 tsp mustard seeds

1 tbsp. vegetable oil

4 large round tomatoes – quarter

5 cloves garlic – peel, crush

Root ginger (thumb sized) – peel and thinly slice

2 bay leaves

2 large red chillies – remove stalks and seeds

2 small red onions – peel, dice

2 medium white onions

5 cardamom pods

5 cloves

15-20g flaked almonds – for sauce, extra below for garnish

1 tbsp.  brown sugar

Water – see method below

20g unsalted butter –  cut into cubes

Salt – to taste

Handful of almond flakes –  toast in a dry hot frying pan until coloured on both sides

Handful of coriander leaf – roughly chop

Method: Start by heating the vegetable oil over a medium high heat, add the mustard seeds and fry until they start to pop (like pop corn). Add the onions and fry for 4-5 minutes until they soften and colour. Next add the bay leaves, cardamom, cloves, chilli, ginger, garlic, flaked almonds and tomatoes. stir well and fry for 2-3 minutes. Add water to the pan, enough to cover the mixture (around 200ml), bring to boil then reduce to a simmer for 10 – 12 minutes.

Once the mixture has simmered remove the bay, cardamom and cloves.  Use a stick or standalone blender to blitz sauce until smooth. You may wish to add a little extra water depending upon how thick you like your curry sauce, take care not to add too much as it will dilute the flavour.

Bring the smooth sauce to a simmer then add 1 tbsp. sugar and season with salt to taste (I used 1 tsp salt), stir until dissolved into the sauce. Add the cubes of butter and stir as they melt into the sauce, they will bring the classic gleam to your sauce as well as adding flavour. Once the butter is melted into the sauce it is ready to serve.

To serve ladle the sauce into the serving plate, place chicken on top then garnish with toasted almonds and chopped coriander.


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Thai King Prawn Curry

King Prawns cooked in a delicious Thai red curry sauce.

This is a quick and easy recipe to make a delicious Thai prawn curry, although you can substitute the prawns for chicken, pork, white fish or tofu if you are a vegetarian. Serve with boiled fragrant jasmine rice.

The authentic flavours come form a wonderful homemade curry paste, like all good Thai curries. There are quite a few ingredients in the paste, however they are perfectly balance and can be used in many other dishes. All the ingredients I use are easily obtained in Scotland from your local Asian supermarket, and increasingly your regular supermarket.

  For this recipe you only need half the paste, the other half can be stored in fridge for up to five days, or frozen for next time. You can also use the paste to marinade chicken before roasting, or as I did marinade tiger prawns then roast them in the curry paste – just amazing!


Serves Two people

Preparation 10 minutes, cooking time 10-12 minutes


Ingredients and method

For the curry paste:

4 large red chillies – remove stalk  and seeds

6 bird eye chillies – remove stalk and seeds

3 red onions – peel, roughly dice

Thumb sized piece root ginger – peel, roughly chop

2 sticks lemongrass – bruise, remove outer husk and thinly slice

1 medium sized garlic bulb – peel each clove

2 tbsp. cashew nuts

Juice of 2 limes

2 lime leafs

2 tbps ketchup manis

2 tbsp. oyster sauce

1 tbsp. dark soy sauce

3 tbsp. vegetable oil

2 tbsp. coriander stalks

3 tbsp. desiccated coconut

3 tbsp. brown sugar

3 cardamom pods

3 cloves

Method: Use a mini blender or food processor to blitz all the ingredients into a smooth paste. Cutting the harder and more fibrous ingredients such as the ginger and lemongrass helps for a smoother paste. You can also do this the authentic Thai way by using a mortar and pestle – unfortunately due to my disabilities I can no longer do this.

You only need half the paste for this recipe, to store the other half either freeze it (does not effect the flavour like some claim) or store it in a refrigerated airtight container for up to 5 days.

For the main dish:

Half the curry paste

150-200ml coconut milk

50ml water

1 tbsp. vegetable oil

225g Raw king prawns – Shells removed, devein

1 large red chilli – remove stalk, thinly slice

6-8 large Mint leaves – bruise, thinly sliced

2 tbsp. roughly chopped coriander leaf

Method: Heat 1 tbsp. of oil in a wide deep frying pan or wok over a high heat. Add the curry paste, reduce heat to medium and stir fry for 6-8 minutes until the paste is very aromatic. If it begins to catch add a little of the water to loosen the sauce.

Add the water and 150ml coconut milk to the sauce along with the mint leaves, increase the heat until the sauce begins to boil then reduce to a simmer for 2-3 minutes. Taste test the sauce, add a little extra coconut milk if you wish but keep some to drizzle over the dish. Add the prawns and poach them in the sauce for 1-2 minutes, until they change from grey to pink and sauce starts to bubble again.

To complete the dish sprinkle the chopped coriander and sliced chillies on top, and drizzle a swirl of coconut milk on top (1-2 tbsp.). Serve straight away with some fragrant boiled jasmine rice.

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Carrot and Coriander Curry with King Prawns

A curry made with carrot and coriander soup base, onions, potatoes, garlic, cardamom, chilli, tomatoes and jumbo king prawns.

I have always liked carrot and coriander soup and thought that it would make an excellent base for a curry. I did a little experimenting and came up with this recipe – which exceeded my very high expectations. It has a wonderful earthy, warming flavour without being too spicy. I added potatoes and some King prawns to make this a really satisfying dish, both take on the flavours really well. The addition of chilli, garlic and cardamom adds a new depth of flavour to the dish, which is my new favourite curry!

I used the leftover Carrot and Coriander Soup in this recipe.


Serves two people

Preparation and cooking time 45 minutes


Ingredients and method

300-400ml carrot and coriander soup – please use Carrot and Coriander Soup

200g raw jumbo king prawns

125g potatoes – peel, cut into small pieces

2 tbsp. vegetable oil

2 medium size white onions – peel, thinly slice

6 gloves garlic – peel, finely chop

2 large red chillies – remove stalk and seeds, finely chop

4 green cardamom pods

1 small carrot – peel, thinly slice

2 round tomatoes – cut into thin crescents (1/8ths)

3 tbsp. chopped coriander leaf

Salt and pepper to taste

Method: Start by par boiling the potato pieces for 7-8 minutes in well salted water, then drain and set aside.

In a deep wide pan heat 2 tbsp. vegetable oil over a medium hot heat. Add the sliced onions and fry for 5 minutes, stirring frequently (a little colour on some is good). Add the drained potatoes and stir well so they are all coated in the oil, continue to fry for a further 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Next add the sliced carrot garlic, chilli, generous amount of ground black pepper and cardamom, stir well and continue to fry for a further 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently – be gentle so you don’t break up the potatoes.

Add the carrot and coriander soup and stir through the fried ingredients. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer for 10-15 minutes. After this taste test and add salt if required, as there is salt in the soup you should need very little.

The other ingredients – the prawns, tomatoes and coriander are added at the last minute so they do not overcook. Add the prawns first and stir through the sauce, as soon as they start to turn pink add the tomatoes and coriander, stir gently through the sauce. Increase heat slightly and as soon as the sauce starts to bubble it is ready to serve. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did!


Thai King Prawn Red curry

Delicious curry made with a fresh homemade curry paste, with King Prawns, green beans and Thai herbs.

Like all good Thai curries the secret is using a fresh homemade paste. Don’t use the ones in jars from the supermarket, they simply don’t have the flavour. This recipe gives enough paste for two meals, simply store in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze it – it defrosts well and doesn’t loose its flavour. I will feature a number of other recipes using this paste in the coming weeks.

The dish itself is very quick and easy to cook and will bring back those memories of Bangkok or sitting on a perfect Thai beach. I wish I was there now!

Serves two people

Preparation 15 minutes, cooking time approx. 15 minutes

Ingredients and method

For the curry paste

8 cloves garlic – peeled

thumb of ginger – peeled and slice thinly

2 large red chillies – remove stalk, keep seeds

4 red bird eye chillies – remove stalk keep seeds

Zest and juice of 1 lime

3 tbsp. vegetable oil

2 tsp tamarind paste

2 tsp shrimp paste

2 tbsp. fish sauce

1 tbsp. coriander stalks

4 dessert spoons brown sugar

3 dessert spoons desiccated coconut

6 black peppercorns

2 sticks lemongrass – bruise, remove outer husk, slice thinly

Handful of peanuts

8-10 Thai basil leafs – remove stalk

2 lime leafs

1 tsp chilli powder

1 tsp cumin powder

1 tsp turmeric powder

1 tsp coriander powder

Method: Use a mini chopper, food processor or mortar and pestle to pound into a smooth paste. Slicing ginger and lemongrass beforehand makes it much easier to form a smooth paste. Once a smooth paste has been formed separate into two even portions. As mentioned above the spare portion can be frozen or stored in an airtight refrigerated container for up to 5 days.

For the main dish

2 portions of jasmine rice – cook as per packet instructions

200g raw King prawns –  shell and head removed

200ml coconut milk

150ml water

70g fine green beans – cut into 4-5cm batons

2 tbsp. roughly chopped coriander leaf

4 spring onions (white part only) – slice diagonally into 4cm lengths

8-10 Thai basil leafs – remove stalk

1 lime – cut into wedges to garnish

Method: Start by frying the paste in a non stick pan, as there is oil in the paste there should be no need to add extra, if paste sticks to pan loosen with a little water rather than adding oil. As the rice takes a similar time start to cook it now as per packet instructions. Fry paste for 4-5 minutes until the paste moves round pan as a single mass, take care not to let paste stick to pan and burn. Add the coconut milk and the water and stir well until fully combined, bring to boil and simmer for 7-8 minutes. Add the green beans and the spring onion and simmer for a further 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the raw king prawns to the sauce and poach them, bring back to a simmer and continue to cook until the prawns change from grey to pink. Remove from heat and serve immediately along with the cooked jasmine rice. Garnish the dish with the coriander, Thai basil and lime wedges.


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Turmeric, Chilli and Lime Salmon with Lentil Dahl curry and Pilau rice

Salmon fillets, marinated in lime and turmeric then pan-fried. Served with a Dahl style lentil curry and pilau rice. Garnished with some sliced tomato, red onion and coriander.

This dish may look a little yellow, but don’t let that fool you – this is one of best curries I have designed in a while.


Serves two people

Preparation time 20 minutes, cooking time 50-60 minutes


For the salmon:

2 skinless salmon fillets

Juice of two limes

2 teaspoons ground turmeric

1 red bird eye chilli – thinly sliced

2 tablespoons vegetable oil – to fry salmon

Method: In a bowl mix the turmeric, sliced chilli and lime juice. Put salmon in bowl and give a god coating on all sides. Put in a fridge for at least an hour before cooking (best 2-3 hours) and remove 30 minutes before cooking to bring back to room temperature. The marinade will change the salmon from pink to yellow and infuse it with a wonderful flavour. To cook, heat two tablespoons of oil in a wide frying pan over a medium high heat. Cook the salmon for 4-5 minutes on each side then remove and place on absorbent paper to drain before serving.

For Dahl curry

125g red lentils – washed thoroughly

2 -3 round tomatoes – remove skin and seeds

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

1 teaspoon mustard seeds

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 large white onion

3-4 cloves garlic

1 green chilli – thinly sliced

1/4 teaspoon ground asafoetida

1 teaspoon salt – extra to taste


8-10 curry leafs

Garnish – 1 sliced tomato, 1 sliced red onion and chopped coriander

Method: Start by heating the oil in a deep pan over a medium high heat. Add the mustard seeds and fry until the begin to start to pop then add the onion, chilli, tomato and the garlic. Fry for 3-4 minutes then add the turmeric, stir well and fry for an additional minute then add the washed lentils and stir well. Add enough water to completely cover the lentils and bring to a simmer. Add the curry leafs , a  teaspoon of salt and the asafoetida , stir well,  and reduce heat to a simmer for 50 minutes, checking each 10 minutes and adding extra water as the lentils thicken and water cooks off. The dish is ready when the lentils break down and the sauce is at your chosen consistency. Before serving taste for seasoning and add additional salt to your taste. Add some sliced tomato, red onion and coriander as a garnish to the dish when served.

Pilau rice

150 basmati or long grain rice – rinsed thoroughly
1 white onion – diced
2 cloves garlic – thinly sliced
15g butter
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground coriander
4 cloves
4 cardamom pods
Bay leaf
Pinch saffron
Chicken stock – twice the volume of the rinsed rice

You require a medium to large pan with a tight-fitting lid (glass is best)
Method: melt the butter in a pan over a medium heat then add the onion, garlic and all the spices. Stir and fry for around 4 minutes until the onion softens and the spices become aromatic. Add the rice and stir through until the rice is fully coated and the mixed through the spiced onion mixture. Add twice the volume of stock to the volume of rice, bring to the boil then reduce heat to a simmer. Cover pan with a tight-fitting lid and leave on a low heat. Let the rice drink the stock as it cooks, it should take around 10 minutes for the rice to fully absorb the stock. Once stock is fully absorbed carefully remove pan lid and fluff rice with a fork before serving.






Special Cod Makhani with Pilau Rice

Pan fried cod with Makhani curry sauce, served on pilau rice.

My Makhai curry sauce is one of my favourites, and one I can confidently say rivals even the best of Indian restaurants here in the UK.

With this dish i decided to make a ‘posher’ version and decided to use pan fried cod as the sauce complements the delicate sweet white fish very well. I serve this with a delicious pilau rice which also complements the dish extremely well. The rice tastes extremely authentic yet is very straightforward to make whilst the curry sauce cooks.

Special Cod Makhani


Serves two people

Cooking time approx 45 minutes


For the curry sauce:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

3 medium sized brown onions (cut into chunks)

5 cloves garlic (peeled and crushed)

5 cloves

5 cardamom pods

3 bay leaf

1 large red chili (sliced)

6 round tomatoes (quartered)

thumb sized piece of ginger (cut 1/4 off, then thinly slice the rest)

100-150ml water

160ml coconut cream

3 tablespoons desiccated coconut

1 tablespoon dried sliced almonds

1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander

1-2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon garam masala

1/4 teaspoon crushed fenugreek

25g butter (cut into cubes)

A hand blender is required. Best cooked in a large deep pan.

For the fish:

2 cod portions (approx 200g each)

50g butter for pan frying

Sea salt

Black pepper

Best cooked in a large flat non stick frying pan.

For the pilau rice:

4 shallots – finely chopped

2 cloves garlic – thinly slice

15g butter

1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

Chicken stock – twice the volume of the rice

150g basmati rice

4 cardamom pods

4 cloves

1 bay leaf

Pinch saffron

Best cooked in a dutch oven style cast iron pan with a heavy well fitting lid.

Cooking instructions

Pictural examples below:

  1. Start by making the sauce. Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in the deep pan, the add the chopped onions. Fry for 5-8 minutes over a medium heat, stirring frequently, until the onions are softened and have colour. Do not worry about the onions browning as this adds flavour to the dish. Next add the desiccated coconut, garlic, chopped ginger, bay leaf, cardamom pods, cloves and the sliced chili. Stir fry for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add the tomatoes to the pan, stir well. Add 100-150ml water to the pan, this should be enough to cover the tomatoes, if you add too much the dish takes a little longer to cook. The aim here is to give the tomatoes enough liquid to break down and form a sauce without making the sauce too loose. Simmer uncovered over a medium heat for 20 minutes. Then remove the bay, cardamom and cloves then use the stick blender to form a smooth curry paste. Add the coconut cream, 1 tablespoon of brown sugar and a teaspoon of salt. Stir well until combined. Set aside for the moment.
  3. Now make the pilau rice. Start by frying the shallots and garlic in a tablespoon of vegetable oil over a medium heat. Add 15g butter along with 1/8 teaspoon Cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon turmeric and 1/2 teaspoon coriander. Fry and stir for 2 minutes until the spices become fragrant (do not allow these to burn).
  4. Add the rice and stir so that each grain is coated in the fried spice mix. Then add the chicken stock (this should be twice the volume of rice). Add 4 cardamom, 4 cloves, pinch saffron and a bay leaf then reduce heat to low and place lid on pan. It should take approx 15 minutes for the rice to absorb all the liquid, when this is done the rice is ready. Do not stir the rice once the liquid is added as this will cause the rice to break up and become mushy.
  5. Back to the sauce: As the pilau cooks finish off the sauce, warm the sauce through over a medium heat. Add the butter and stir through the sauce as it melts – this will give the sauce the classic ‘gleam’ of Indian dishes. Add the sliced almonds (keep a few to add as a garnish), the grated ginger, 1/4 teaspoon crushed fennugreek and the half teaspoon of garam masala – use your fingers to sprinkle the spices in as otherwise they can clump together in the sauce.
  6.  Now cook the cod: Add the butter to the frying pan and put over a medium heat until the butter melts and starts to bubble.
  7. Season the cod with a little salt and pepper on both sides before adding to the pan. Fry for 3 minutes on each side, basting with butter frequently. The cod should get some nice colouration as it cooks. Once cooked remove cod from the pan and drain on absorbent paper.
  8. Carefully remove lid from rice and check that the rice has absorbed all the liquid – if not replace the lid, and give the rice a few extra minutes. Heat the curry sauce through until it bubbles just before serving.
  9. Serve the dish – bed of rice, cod on top then a generous amount of sauce over the fish. Sprinkle the chopped coriander and a few sliced almonds as a garnish  – enjoy!