Green Coriander Chicken (Dhania Chicken)

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We’ve had a few cool days lately, hence the curries and casseroles are making an appearance.  Hooray!

I have made this recipe before and decided against doing a post on it because it is not at all photogenic.  But, because it is so very tasty, this time I decided we could live with a not-so-pretty picture.  Maybe the salad and the coriander flower are a bit over the top but I was determined to add some colour.

This is another recipe from Madhur Jaffrey’s Ultimate Curry Bible.  When I had the book out the other day, I was reminded of this great recipe so decided to make it again.

Madhur Jaffrey credits Gulzar Ahamed with this recipe. She notes that it’s a favourite among the Ismaili Muslims of Kenya.  To quote Madhur, “It has an exquisite flavour and may well be one of the best chicken dishes I have ever eaten.”  Hooly dooly!! That is a big call.  Give it a go.  It is very easy to make.


  • 7½ cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • salt
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 4 chicken Marylands, skinned and separated into drumsticks and thighs  (You could also use 8 skinned drumsticks.)
  • 1 medium tomato, about 140g, chopped
  • 90g fresh coriander, leaves and stems
  • 2-3 green chillies, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tsp tomato puree
  • 3 tbs* oil
  • 250 mls natural yoghurt


  1. Put the ginger, garlic, ¼ tsp salt, 2 tbs* water and the lemon juice in a blender. Blend until smooth.
  2. Place the chicken in a bowl. Pour the ginger mixture over the top and rub in.
  3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow to marinate for, at least, 30 minutes and up to 24 hours.
  4. Put the tomato, coriander, chillies, tomato puree, ¾ tsp salt and 2 tbs* of water in the blender. Blend until smooth.
  5. Pour oil into a non-stick fry pan and, when hot, add the chicken together with the marinade and fry, stirring until the chicken is lightly browned (about 10 minutes).
  6. Add the tomato mixture and continue to cook and stir until the sauce thickens (about 10 minutes).
  7. Add the yoghurt.  Stir and cook until you have a thick sauce edged with oil (approx. 4-5 minutes).
  8. Cover the pot with the lid and reduce the heat to as low as possible.  Cook for 5-10 minutes, until the chicken is cooked to your liking.
  9. Serve with rice.

*These are 15 mil tablespoons


16 thoughts on “Green Coriander Chicken (Dhania Chicken)

  1. This recipe turned out really well. It must be the first Indian dish I cooked that doesn’t use masala/spices. The flavour combination was superb. My husband found the garlic too overpowering though.

  2. Would make a great sensory love note to come home to after a day @ work…tis the season of the slow cooker.Finally things are cooling down..The garden is breathing a sigh of relief!!

  3. The camera isn’t a friend of most curries, Glenda, but yours looks fine — better than most, in fact. Besides, it’s all about taste and, given that list of ingredients, this sounds like a delicious dish.

    • Hi Gail. She can’t go too wrong:))) Tell her to serve it with cucumber raita. Cut some cucumber into small cubes, add some natural yoghurt mixed with a bit of salt and sprinkle cummin on top. Perfect.

  4. Well, I think it’s a very photogenic dish, because it makes me want to eat it! Madhur Jaffrey is a legend, isn’t she? And Doc, a maryland is a chicken cut which is the thigh with drumstick still attached. I wonder how it got its name?

    • Thank you, my dear – over here, if anyone should really care, those are simply called leg quarters – maybe they applied the name to a portion of the chicken to reflect the fact that Maryland, the US state, is only a quarter the size of a normal state! Hey, that’s as good as anyone else’s guess.

      • Hi Doc, I just checked out Wikipedia (you can find out anything there). It appears it is an Australian description. In Maryland, chicken Maryland refers to fried chicken with a creamy gravy.

  5. I can’t wait to try this one! Frankly, I don’t care what food looks like, unlike the millions of food bloggers who are more interested in food photography than they are in what their food tastes like – it’s all a bit like comparing good old comfort food to molecular gastronomy, which is in my opinion another gimmick foisted on the same general public who watch those silly food battle shows on TV. Don’t fret my dear about those photos, just bring us ugly dishes that break through the taste barrier. Good job.

    I love Madhur Jaffrey and her sensitivities toward cooking – I have a big old paperback copy of her book of Indian vegetarian cooking which is among my most used cookbooks – it’s beginning to fall apart – I think I’ll try to pick up another copy somewhere. (this is it: )

    BTW, what’s a Maryland chicken?

    • Hi Doc, I was a fan of Madhur Jaffrey when she was an actor and started buying her cookbooks for that reason (and because I love all things Indian). I don’t have her vegetarian one though.
      You will enjoy this one. The first night we had it with a cucumber raita, and it was perfect.I see Celia has answered your chicken maryland question.

      • Interestingly, the other Indian cookbook I use often also has a ‘film’ connection – it’s Ismail Merchant’s ‘Indian Cuisine’. I like his book because he apparently never had much time to devote to the kitchen, but he still wanted to retain the essence of India in his food – so many of his recipes are adapted to quick preparation without loss of character. BTW, he and Jaffrey were not only friends, she reputedly introduced Merchant to James Ivory, and the rest is film history, as they say. She also starred in one of their best films, Heat and Dust – I’m sure they not only cooked for each other too, but must have encouraged each other to do their first cookbooks as well. Small world.

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