GUYANESE CHICKEN CURRY

curry1Curry is a very popular dish in Guyana.   More than half of Guyana’s population originate from India, so our culture and cuisine reflects that.   Any vegetable or meat can be made into a curry,  I used the very popular chicken and potato combination. Here it’s served with Dhal Puri, and Indian flatbread.

Chicken and Potato Curry

4 lbs chicken, cut up

5 cloves garlic, crushed

10 stems fresh thyme

2 chicken bouillon cube

1 cinnamon stick(optional)

1/3 cup canola oil

4 medium potato cut into cubes

3 scallion chopped

 

Curry Paste

1/3 cup curry powder

1/4 tsp geera (cumin)

1/2 tsp garam masala

1 1/2 tbsp minced garlic*

5 thyme sprigs*

1/3 cup water

To season chicken, place chicken in a large bowl and season with 5 cloves of crushed garlic, 10 sprigs of thyme and 2 chicken bouillon cube crushed.  Allow chicken to sit in the refridgerator for at least 4 hours.

To make Paste, mix all curry powder, geera, garam masala, garlic, thyme and water.  Heat 1/4 cup canola oil on a medium fire.  Add curry paste  and fry for about 4-5 mins.   Add seasoned chicken, cinnamon stick and allow to cook slowly for 15 to 20 mins.  Add pototoes and enough water to cover the chicken.  Bring to a boil, turn fire down to low and simmer until potato is tender.   Remove from heat and add chopped scallion to garnish.

*Instead of using garlic and thyme in the curry paste, you can also use 1 tbsp of green seasoning.

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44 Comments

  1. pds
    July 26, 2009 / 10:42 am

    I love seeing the variations on Guyanese recipes. I have a 4 pound tin of Lalah’s curry powder that sits on top of my fridge. I’ve even found a place online that sells it. I know that bulk stores carry it at at great price, but I would be so sad to lose my red tin of goodness!

  2. Rey
    July 30, 2009 / 6:03 am

    I just found your website yesterday!! I am soo glad I did. Please keep making recipes. Can you do one for “same” sorry about spelling w/ beef and potato curry? Thank you!!

  3. JehanP
    July 30, 2009 / 6:57 am

    For the Beef curry just swap the chicken with beef and simmer the beef until its tender.

  4. JehanP
    August 1, 2009 / 8:15 am

    I will add this as a note to the recipe…geera is cumin. Sometimes I forget not everyone is familiar with the Indian names.

  5. Hummingbird appetite
    August 2, 2009 / 7:49 am

    Oh I have cumin. Thanks for the definition of geera.

  6. Kavita
    August 19, 2009 / 8:53 am

    Thanks for sharing these recipes, I have tried to get them from my mother but could never get any actual measurements. This is the first time anyone has mentioned thyme in curry…I am assuming that was the missing piece..I could never replicate the taste I was accustomed to growing up. Will be trying that once the heat wave subsides. The pine tarts looks amazing

  7. Karen
    August 28, 2009 / 9:27 am

    What is garam masala and where can I find it?

  8. JehanP
    August 28, 2009 / 10:44 am

    Garam masala is a mixture of spices. It can be found in the Indian grocery store in the spice section or you can make your own. Here is a recipe for garam masala Garam Masala:

    2 tablespoons cumin seeds
    2 tablespoons coriander seeds
    2 tablespoons cardamom seeds
    2 tablespoons black peppercorns
    1 (3-inch) stick cinnamon, broken up
    1 teaspoon whole cloves
    1 teaspoon grated nutmeg
    1/2 teaspoon saffron (optional)

    Instructions:

    Put the cumin, coriander, cardamom, peppercorns, cinnamon, and cloves in a dry heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Toast the spices, stirring occasionally, until they turn several shades darker and give off a sweet smoky aroma, about 10 minutes. Do not raise the heat to quicken the process, or the spices will brown prematurely, leaving the insides undercooked. Cool completely.

    Working in batches if necessary, transfer the mixture to a spice mill or coffee grinder and grind to a powder. Stir in the nutmeg and saffron. Use immediately or store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.

    Garam Masala keeps for 3 months.

    Yield: Makes about 1/2 cup

  9. Corinne
    September 11, 2009 / 2:31 pm

    Hi, thank you so much for sharing this recipe. I love making Guyanese dishes, but now I know I have to marinate the meat to make it tasty. ‘Love your site specially the photos! Keep it up!

  10. JehanP
    November 9, 2009 / 2:08 pm

    I’m so sorry..no it’s not a dumb question at all! Actually I have to thank you for finding that error. I add the scallion at the very end, just when you take the pot off the heat.

  11. Joylyn
    February 27, 2010 / 6:39 pm

    Hello, I recently found your website and love it. Can you do fried rice? Also chow mein. Thank you.

  12. Nalini
    May 17, 2010 / 10:26 am

    Hello, I would love to get your receipe for Guyanese fried rice. Have you ever tried using seaseme oil in the fried rice? Apparently many of the Guyanese restaurants use it. I understand that there is an art in cooking to avoid the actual taste of the seaseme oil.

    Cocount buns – have you ever tried it with the already shreaded coconut found in the baking aile of the supermarket? I would love to try it, but don’t have access to the fresh coconut. Thanks alot!!

  13. JehanP
    May 17, 2010 / 3:18 pm

    Hi Nalini, I actually used sesame oil in my fried rice and chow mien. I love the flavor and add just a touch of it to the vegetable oil. As for the coconut, lets face it, no one has the time to grate and squeeze fresh coconut. I used the sweetened coconut from the supermarket and the buns still taste great! I recently posted a recipe for coconut buns using flaked coconut. Try it out and let me know what you think.

  14. Krishna
    September 9, 2010 / 11:52 pm

    spot on with traditional guyanese meals. I would know, any recipe for (sorry for the spelling) pulowri?

  15. JehanP
    September 10, 2010 / 8:18 am

    I do have a recipe for that…and don’t worry about the spelling, I’m not even sure there is a right way to spell it lol. Here you go http://www.jehancancook.com/?p=1464

  16. Amy
    September 26, 2011 / 8:41 am

    What happen to salt????

  17. JehanP
    September 29, 2011 / 7:58 am

    Hi Amy, since we are using chicken bouillon there is no need for additional salt because chicken bouillon contains salt.

  18. Patrice
    October 23, 2011 / 8:24 am

    Thanks for this curry recipe and all of your recipes. I am Guyanese born, but grew up in the US so its nice to have this organized resource, outside of just my family. Keep up the good work!

    Patrice

  19. Malisa
    January 9, 2012 / 6:19 am

    Hello Jehan,

    I made this curry yesterday and I screwed it up somehow. 🙁 The house smelled fantastic. The meal looked wonderful, but it was very bland. I don’t know what i did wrong, but I will try again and stick strictly to your recipe. I thought i did, but I did not have cinn stix, so i used powder and I added the water from the chicken to the curry. Idk, but I will try again and let you know how it turned out.

  20. narissa
    October 6, 2012 / 10:54 pm

    hi how are you jehan, always wanted to make good chicken curry, im guyanese but i hardly know to cook guyanese food and my husband craves for it alot, i will definetly try your chicken curry, just one problem i have, i’m only cooking for three, how do i cut the recipe in half…please help

  21. JehanP
    October 9, 2012 / 7:36 am

    Hi Narissa, in order to cut the recipe in half you would have to cut all of the ingredients in half which could be a bit challenging. There are websites online that you can add the measurement and it would adjust it in half for you. This recipe freezes well so that’s an option also, freezing the extras for another time.

  22. Sarah
    December 20, 2012 / 3:52 am

    Hi Jehan,

    I stumbled on your website a few months ago and I have been so impressed-it great to find west indian recipies online. I have one question, how many does it serve, sorry I couldn’t see.

    Thanks

  23. JehanP
    December 23, 2012 / 1:03 pm

    Hi Sarah, this recipe serves about 6-8 people .

  24. Lisa
    February 2, 2013 / 10:40 pm

    no onion?? I would have thought the scallion would be more garnish….I usually cook very similar, saute onion with curry powder though – never used bouillon – good idea – another layer of flavor…

  25. Sherri
    July 30, 2013 / 9:17 am

    I made the curry chicken and followed your recipie exactly. I found it to be too much liquid and not enough pepper. I did have to add some scotch bonnet and next time, I will make the curry paste with less water.

  26. JehanP
    July 30, 2013 / 12:27 pm

    Hi Sherri, if the curry is too liquid then cook it longer to reduce the liquid and thicken the sauce.

  27. Stephi
    September 11, 2013 / 7:48 am

    Hi Jehan,
    I made this yesterday with some modification from Cynthia Nelson’s cookbook. The two of you have brought back Guyanese cooking into my house. My husband and I are so pleased. Even our 7 year old son was had three servings. Thank you for making me more confident with my roots. Keep up the good work.
    Stephi

  28. Natasha
    September 20, 2013 / 7:05 am

    I made this last night. It was fantastic. Thank you for this grand recipe!

  29. Selina
    January 14, 2014 / 9:23 am

    this recipe is so helpful! I come from a huge guyanese family and learned to cook from my mother her curry recipe is all the same ingredients but your has the perfect measurements which makes all the difference!

  30. Feeza
    January 21, 2014 / 1:15 pm

    I am hesitant to use bouillon because of the msg.

  31. JehanP
    February 2, 2014 / 7:31 am

    Freeze, you can use chicken stock in place of the water.

  32. Sinnola
    February 10, 2014 / 1:10 pm

    My husband is from usvi st criox, would you say this version is close to what they may have ?! I loooooooovvvveeee your blog by the way we need more like this!

  33. June 1, 2015 / 3:22 pm

    Just came across your site this afternoon. I am biologically Guyanese and have only seen these dishes at parties with distant relatives. Love that I can now have a taste of my childhood again as Guyanese restaurants are rare…. Thanks!

  34. JehanP
    June 3, 2015 / 12:24 pm

    You’re welcome JJ B, I’m glad I can be of help.

  35. Joyce from Toronto, Canada
    August 19, 2015 / 9:45 pm

    I am so happy I found your website, Jehan. I’m assembling my ingredients for this curry dish, and I was wondering, is the minced garlic under your curry paste section powdered garlic, or should it be fresh garlic?

  36. JehanP
    August 20, 2015 / 9:06 am

    Joyce, welcome! You should always used fresh garlic in curry.

  37. October 28, 2015 / 1:48 pm

    I am not sure how many servings this is, I have to make this for approximately 60 people can someone help me with the ingredients, as to how much I will need for this dish. Thanks Jeri

  38. JehanP
    November 2, 2015 / 3:29 pm

    Hi Jer, sorry for the late reply. This is approximately 8 servings.

  39. Sandy
    September 4, 2016 / 10:41 pm

    I’m curious which brand of bullion you use. I used two cubes but found the chicken flavor too strong and a bit too salty. Thanks for the wonderful recipes.

  40. JehanP
    September 5, 2016 / 1:43 pm

    Hi Sandy, I use Wyler’s. You do need to adjust it based on brand because some can be very salty. Thank you for the comment!

  41. Lea
    December 28, 2016 / 6:54 am

    Jehan, Merry Christmas ! Thank you for the recipe for chicken curry. I tried it yesterday and got a great result! I really appreciate your sharing these recipes as they instantly make me feel like I’m in my family’s kitchen. Thank you so much,

    Lea Singh

  42. JehanP
    January 5, 2017 / 10:47 am

    You’re welcome Lea.