Murg Kali Mirch is an evergreen Indian chicken curry with black pepper (kali mirch), made in various ways across the nation. The aroma of freshly ground black pepper integrated with the flavour of chicken and assorted spices in this Indian simmered pepper-chicken curry is bound to drive you hungry! Over the years, I have tried experimenting with the combo of pepper and chicken along with various Indian spices. By now, I have five different recipes of chicken with black pepper powder, but the one given here scores the highest when it comes to entertaining my guests.
One has to be careful about the balance of spices in this curry. The dominating flavour would be obviously the black pepper, so we have to minimize the amounts of other spices in this dish. We Indians generally love the “fiery version” of any curry, especially if it is a meat dish. The amount of black pepper powder used in this chicken curry recipe will give the dish a “medium-spicy” tag, from the Indian taste perspective. So, if you are among those who eat spicy food rarely, please feel free to decrease the amount of pepper powder according to your tolerance level. You can always add extra pepper powder towards the end of the cooking, if needed, isn’t it?
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Murg Kali Mirch (Indian Black Pepper Chicken)
- Whole chicken (de-skinned) and chopped into medium-sized pieces: 1.2 kg
- Medium-sized potatoes (de-skinned and halved): 3
- Purple onion paste: 1.5 cups
- Garlic paste: 1 tbsp
- Ginger paste: ¾ tsp
- Black pepper powder (freshly powdered): 2 tsp
- Salt (for frying the potatoes): ¼ tsp
- Salt (for marinating the chicken): 1.25 tsp
- Turmeric powder (for marination): ½ tsp
- Dried bay leaf: 1
- Whole cinnamon (1-inch-long; called dalchini): 3
- Whole green cardamoms (choti elaichi): 6
- Whole black cardamom (badi elaichi)
- Cumin powder: 1.5 tsp
- Desiccated fresh coconut: 2.5 tsp
- Fresh cream: 2 tbsp
- Salt (for the curry): 1.5 tsp
- Turmeric powder (for frying the potatoes): two pinches
- Turmeric powder (for the curry): ¾ tsp
- Green chillies (slit): 4
- Water: 2 cups
- Oil: ½ cup (for cooking)+ 1.5 tbsp (for marination)
Marinate the chicken for atleast 1 hour with salt, turmeric powder and 1.5 tbsp oil.
Heat oil in the kadhai or wok. Add the bay leaf, cinnamon and the cardamoms to the hot and smoking oil, regulating the flame to “medium”.
Fry the potatoes with ¼ tsp salt and two pinches of turmeric powder, till these become brownish. Remove the potatoes, but leave the whole spices in the oil.
Add the onion-garlic-ginger paste to the oil. Add 1.5 tsp salt and sauté till the onions lose the water content. Now add the cumin powder and sauté for 5 min, or till the paste looks light brown.
Add the fresh cream and green chillies. Add water, stir and cover. Slow-cook for 20 min, or until the water boils vigorously for about 10 min. Serve with steamed rice or roti.