Chicken Pasanda is a rich, creamy, mild curry made with yogurt, spices, cream and ground almonds. Quick to prepare, it's on the table in under 30 minutes!
This is a great curry if you're cooking for kids or grown ups who don't like spicy-hot food.
I love the vibrant yellow colour of this curry.
And the taste, although not spicy, is still rich and full of flavour.
For once I'm making a curry with no tinned tomatoes, stock or coconut milk - the flavour comes from the garlic, ginger, spices and thick natural yogurt.
You would think it would be quite tangy, using yogurt for a sauce base, but the addition of that little bit of cream and the slight sweetness of the ground almonds really balances out the yogurt.
📋 What do we need?
- Although more traditionally made with lamb or goat, I'm going with a chicken pasanda, using chicken breast pieces - meaning we can cook it faster. You can use well-trimmed chicken thigh meat if you prefer. Chicken thigh meat works particularly well if you feel like making a chicken tikka version of pasanda.
- For the yogurt - go with natural full-fat yogurt - don't replace with a low fat yogurt, otherwise the sauce will split.
- Use double (full-fat) cream too. The higher fat content helps to ensure the sauce won't split.
🔪 How to make this Pasanda curry
**Full recipe with detailed steps in the recipe card at the end of this post.**
- Fry chopped onions in a large pan in some ghee until softened.
- Add in chopped chicken and cardamon, followed by the garlic, ginger and spices.
- We cook that for a couple of minutes, then add in natural yogurt, cream and ground almonds. Stir it all together and simmer for 6-8 minutes until the sauce thickens and the chicken is cooked through.
- Stir in a little fresh coriander right before serving.
👩🍳PRO TIP I like to use just a little bit of mild chilli powder in mine, for just that slight hint of heat, but you can leave the chilli out entirely and it will still taste fantastic.
Serve up with more fresh coriander, plus a sprinkling of flaked almonds that have been toasted in a dry pan for a couple of minutes. The toasty almond-y crunch works brilliantly with the pasanda flavours.
📺 Watch how to make it
Also, some torn up chapati on the side makes this meal extra special!!
🍲 More fantastic Curry recipes
I've got loads of different curries on Kitchen Sanctuary - how about some of these chicken curries:
- 2 tbsp ghee - (or sunflower oil)
- 1 onion - peeled and finely chopped
- 3 chicken breasts - approx. 525g/1.1lbs, chopped into bite-size chunks
- 3 cardamom pods
- 2 cloves garlic - peeled and minced
- 2 tsp minced ginger
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 ½ tsp ground coriander
- 1.5 tsp garam masala
- ½ tsp mild chilli powder - (optional, leave it out for no heat)
- ½ tsp turmeric
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 240 ml (1 cup) full fat plain yogurt
- 60 ml (¼ cup) double (heavy) creamy
- 3 tbsp ground almonds (almond meal)
- 2 tbsp freshly chopped coriander - (cilantro)
- 2 tbsp toasted almond flakes
- 2 tbsp freshly chopped coriander - (cilantro)
- Boiled rice and/or chapati
- Heat the 2 tbsp of ghee in a large frying pan over a medium heat, until hot.
- Add the chopped onion and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often, until softened.
- Add the chicken breast pieces and 3 cardamom and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is sealed.
- Add the 2 cloves garlic, 2 tsp minced ginger, 1 tsp cumin, 1 ½ tsp ground coriander, 1 ½ tsp garam masala, ½ tsp mild chilli powder, ½ tsp turmeric, ¼ tsp salt and ¼ tsp pepper.
- Cook for 2 minutes, stirring, until the chicken is coated.
- Add the 240ml (1 cup) yogurt, 60ml (¼ cup) cream and 3 tbsp ground almonds. Bring to a gentle boil, then simmer for 6-8 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.
- Stir in the 2 tbsp of fresh coriander (cilantro), then serve the pasanda topped with toasted almond flakes and more fresh coriander (cilantro).
- Serve with rice and/or chapati.
Make the curry, then quickly cool, cover and refrigerate for up to a day.
Reheat in a pan, over a medium heat (not high), stirring occasionally, until piping hot throughout. The sauce will thicken as it cools, so you may want to add in a splash of cream or stock when reheating. Can I freeze it? Yogurt can sometimes be funny about freezing, and can sometimes split or go a little grainy on defrosting.
However I've frozen and reheated this curry and it was fine. The key here is to ensure you're using full fat cream and full fat yogurt. Lower fat dairy products are much more likely to split/curdle.
- Also ensure you cool the pasanda quickly and freeze as soon as possible after cooking.
- Ideally freeze in portions so it defrosts quicker.
- Defrost in the refrigerator overnight, then reheat in a pan until piping hot throughout. Be sure to heat on a medium heat (rather than a high heat) and stir occasionally while re-heating.
It will take slightly longer for the chicken to cook if you're doubling up. Nutritional information is per serving (this recipe serves 4) without the serving suggestions of rice or chapati.
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