Kadai Chicken Dhaba Style
  1. How to Marinate and fry the chicken
  2. Coat the chicken pieces with kadai masala, red chilli powder, crushed black pepper, lemon juice and salt. Set aside while you chop the onions and bell peppers.
  3. Heat a kadai and pour the oil. Fry the marinated chicken pieces until nice and golden.
  4. When done transfer the fried chicken pieces into a bowl.
  5. Method to make the Kadai Chicken Gravy
  6. Use the same kadai and the same oil in which you fried the chicken pieces. Using the same kadai while cooking the rest of the recipe will enhance flavours. You can add some more oil if needed.
  7. Once the kadai and oil is hot, throw in the cumin and shajeera and the bay leaves. Allow them to splutter for a few seconds.
  8. Add the chopped onions and fry until golden brown. Add salt at this stage, as it will get the onions roasting fast and will deglaze the Kadai as well.
  9. Next, add the chopped tomatoes and saute until they become soft and mushy.
  10. Add the spices; red chilli powder and Kadai masala and ginger juliennes. Sauté until the raw smell disappears, the masala becomes a smooth blend, fragrant and oil begins to ooze out at the sides.
  11. It is time to add the fried chicken pieces and sauté well in the masala. In Punjabi, we call it bhun na and all the magic of the recipe lies in the bhun na of the masala or else it gives a very raw smell.
  12. Toss in the chopped bell peppers and the shallots and mix. You don’t need to sauté much if you love crunchy capsicums and pearl onions in the gravy as I do. The bell peppers will get cooked in the heat of the chicken and gravy.
  13. Garnish with crushed Kasuri methi or dry fenugreek leaves, sprinkle some more Kadai masala powder and add some ginger juliennes. Transfer to a serving dish and add some fresh coriander leaves and lemon wedges to the Kadai chicken.
  14. Serve piping hot with roti naan or laccha parathas. Tear a piece of the Laccha paratha, soak up the masala and scoop it into your mouth. The burst of flavours will have you reaching out for more.
Recipe Notes

Marinate the chicken for at least an hour or prep it the previous day and keep in the fridge.

You may skip adding the shallots and add chunks of pink onions.