Black Pepper Chicken – Kali Mirch ka Murgh

Black Pepper Chicken - Kali Mirch ka Murgh

Black Pepper has been exported for centuries ans was one of the major attractions for trader-turned-colonists. Peppercorns are the dried berries of the pepper plant, an evergreen creeper. Their heat and pungency make pepper a popular ingredient in curries, raitas, pachadis and salads. Peppercorns are also boiled in milk with a pinch of turmeric powder as a remedy for colds and sore throats.


Serves 8


4 tbsp sunflower oil

2 tsp peeled and grated root ginger

4 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper

1/2 tsp ground white pepper

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, approximately 950g, cut into bitesize pieces

2 pieces cinnamon sticks

3-4 green cardamoms, slightly crushed

3-4 onions, finely chopped

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

2 green chillies, slit lengthways

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp runny honey

200ml single cream

A generous pinch freshly ground black pepper, to garnish

1 tsp dried fenugreek leaves (kasoori methi), for garnish (optional)


Mix together 1 tbsp of the oil with the ginger, garlic, salt and the black and white pepper and rub the mixture into the chicken pieces. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Heat the remaining oil in a heavy based saucepan and add the cinnamon and cardamoms and sauté for a minute until you can smell the aroma. Add the onions and fry for 5-7 minutes until golden brown but not caramelised. Mix in the cumin and coriander and mix well. Add the marinated chicken pieces and gently stir-fry for 10 minutes until golden brown on the outside and the chicken is cooked on the inside. Cut a piece in half and it should be white. Stir in the lemon juice and the honey and continue to cook for a minute. Add the cream and garnish with the pinch of black pepper and fenugreek leaves, if using. Serve hot with rice or chapatis

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