Safed Murgh Makhanwala

Mallika Basu - Safed Murgh Makhanwala

Safed Murgh Makhanwala, meaning white butter chicken, is a sublime and fragrant way to give leftover roast chicken a makeover. If you don’t have roast chicken handy, just use grilled or baked chicken. The cooked chicken gets a hint of chilli from the white pepper, while the freshly crushed cardamom and nutmeg lift this creamy moist dish. On my food travels in south India during Ramazan, this dish was the one served to my non-Indian friends at the Hyderabad House pop up when they couldn’t handle the heady chillies. If you’re a curry house korma fan, this makes a great change. Serve it with hot buttered naan or crispy fried parathas.


Remove any herbs and skin from the chicken and shred it. Now, grate the ginger and garlic.

Next, bring the butter to medium heat in a sauté pan. When it’s warm, add the ginger and garlic and sizzle for a few seconds. Then stir through the shredded chicken.

Then, add the yoghurt and the hot water and bring the ingredients to a bubble. Now lower the heat to simmer, and stir through the white pepper and cream. Cook this for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, crush the cardamom seeds and nutmeg in a pestle and mortar until fine. Stir through the Safed Murgh Makhanwala when the time is up, adding salt to finish.

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