Chicken curry with tamarind and tomato

Tamarind and tomato chicken curry
Tamarind and tomato chicken curry Photo: James Moffatt

Add a few choice ingredients to store-bought curry paste and you have a curry on the table in less time than it takes to order takeaway.


1 tbsp tamarind paste

¼ cup quality madras curry paste

1 tbsp finely grated ginger

1 tbsp brown sugar

400g can diced tomatoes

2 red onions, cut into thin wedges

8 chicken thighs, skin-on and bone-in

2 roma tomatoes, deseeded and finely chopped

finely grated zest and juice of 1 lime

2 tbsp vegetable oil

6 sprigs curry leaves

steamed rice, to serve


1. Preheat the oven to 200C fan-forced (220C conventional). Combine tamarind, curry paste, 1 cup water, ginger, sugar, tinned tomatoes and three-quarters of the onion in a deep roasting tray. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and place in the tray. Cover with foil and cook for 15 minutes.

2. Remove foil and cook for a further 15 minutes, or until the chicken is golden and sauce is reduced. 

3. Finely chop the remaining onion. Place in a bowl with the fresh tomato, lime zest and juice in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

4. Heat oil in a small frying pan over medium heat. Add the curry leaves in batches and cook for 30 seconds or until crisp. Serve the chicken topped with crispy curry leaves. Serve with the tomato and onion mixture and rice.