A 30-minute chicken, coconut and pineapple curry with serious beach holiday vibes

·2 min read
Extra coconut gives this dish a gorgeous, velvety texture  (PA)
Extra coconut gives this dish a gorgeous, velvety texture (PA)

The combination of both coconut milk and creamed coconut in this curry adds a real gloss and weight to the sauce, giving it a gorgeous, velvety texture,” says food writer Nisha Katona.

“If you can’t get creamed coconut, just double up on the tinned. During the last moments of these exotic sunshine curries, I often throw a handful of roasted nuts to boost the salt and the beach holiday feel. If you’re not a fan of nuts or don’t have any to hand, you can leave these out without any detriment to the dish.”

Chicken, coconut and pineapple curry

Serves: 4


2 thumb-sized pieces fresh root ginger, peeled

5 tbsp vegetable oil

2 onions, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, crushed

3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts (approx 600g/1lb 5oz), chopped into 2cm/¾in cubes

2 tbsp garam masala

1 heaped tsp ground coriander

1 tsp ground turmeric

¼ tsp chilli powder

100g/3½oz creamed coconut

400ml/14fl oz canned coconut milk

2 green chillies, finely sliced

1½ tsp salt

1 tsp brown sugar

10 chunks canned pineapple, cut into 1-2cm/½-¾in pieces

100g/3½oz roasted salted cashew nuts

Small handful fresh coriander, finely chopped, to garnish

1 red chilli, finely sliced, to garnish

Cooked rice, or flatbreads, to serve


The book is filled with recipes Katona cooks at home (Yuki Sugiura/PA)
The book is filled with recipes Katona cooks at home (Yuki Sugiura/PA)

1. Finely mince one of the pieces of ginger and slice the other into fine matchsticks. Set aside.

2. Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add the onions, garlic and minced ginger and fry, stirring continuously, for eight minutes, until golden brown. Add the chicken to the pan and stir to combine with the onions, then add the garam masala, ground coriander, ground turmeric and chilli powder. Cook, stirring occasionally, for five minutes, to seal the chicken and coat it in the spices.

3. Add the creamed coconut, coconut milk, ginger matchsticks, sliced chillies, salt, sugar, pineapple and cashews to the pan and stir to combine, adding a little of the juice from the canned pineapple if the mixture is too dry. Leave to cook, stirring occasionally, for five to 10 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Scatter with chopped corianderand sliced red chilli, then serve hot with rice or wraps alongside.

Recipe extracted from ‘30 Minute Mowgli’ by Nisha Katona (published by Nourish Books, £25; photography by Yuki Sugiura), available now.

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