Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Chicken Nihari ( Pakistani Stew )

Chicken Nihari ( Pakistani Stew ) ... Nihari is a famous South Asian meat stew, specially popular in Pakistan, India and Bangladesh. This slow-cooked meat dish is usually made with beef or mutton, but it tastes just as delicious with chicken.

Chicken Nihari ( Pakistani Stew )

Serves : 6

Ingredients :
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 3 tbsp.  fennel seeds ( sounf )
  • 1 tsp.  black cumin seeds ( kala zeera )
  • 2 - 3 star anise ( badyan ka phool )
  • 2 green cardamoms, seeds only
  • 1/2 kg.  chicken ( with bones )
  • 1 tbsp.  ginger garlic paste
  • 3 green cardamom
  • 2 black cardamom
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 - 4 cloves
  • 5 - 6 whole black pepper
  • Pinch of nigella seeds ( kalonji )
  • Pinch of carom seeds ( ajwaiin )
  • 1 1/2 to 2 tbsp.  red chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp.  coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp.  turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste
  • Water ( about 2 1/2 cups )
  • 2 to 3 tbsp.  cornflour or whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp.  garam masala powder
  • 1/8 tsp.  nutmeg and mace powder
  • 2 -3 green chillies, chopped
  • Ginger, sliced
  • Lemon slices
Method :
  • Heat oil in a heavy base pan. Add sliced onion and fry until light brown. Remove from oil and drain on paper towel.
  • Blend the fried onions with yogurt to a smooth paste. Keep aside.
  • Combine fennel seeds, black cumin seeds, star anise and green cardamoms in a grinder and grind to a fine powder.
  • Add chicken, ginger garlic paste, green & black cardamoms, cinnamon stick, cloves and black pepper to the oil in the pan. Stir-fry for few minutes until the chicken changes its color.
  • Add nigella seeds, carom seeds, red chilli, coriander powder & turmeric with little water. Stir-fry for a minute until the oil separates ( taking care not to burn it ) .
  • Add ground fennel seed mixture and onion yogurt paste, mix well.   
  • Add water, bring to a boil. Lower the heat to medium-low and cook covered until the chicken is cooked and a thin gravy ( about 2 cups of water ) is left.
  • Dissolve cornflour in little water, add to the pan; stirring continuously until it starts to thicken.
  • Add garam masala powder and nutmeg and mace powder. Cook, covered on low flame for about 5 to 10 minutes until the gravy is slightly thick and the oil comes out.
  • Transfer to a serving dish. Garnish with green chillies, sliced ginger and lemon.
  • Serve hot with tandoori roti or Naan.
Note :
  • Use chicken stock instead of water for more rich flavor.
Recipe Source : adapted from a TV cooking show

Linking this to these parties : The Sunday Showcase Party , nifty thrifty sunday , Think Pink Sundays , A Round Tuit , Make it Pretty Monday , What’d You Do This Weekend? , Time to Sparkle , Tasty Tuesdays , Tasteful Tuesdays , Tuesday Talent Show , It's a Party! , Cast Party Wednesday , Wicked Awesome Wednesday , Riverton Housewives Round Up , Lovely Ladies Linky ( Parrish, Dana, Emily, Leslie, Markell & Traci, Molly ) , Full Plate Thursday , The Weekly Creative ( Melanie , Diana ) , Blog Stalking Thursday , Thursday's treasures ( Christie, Debi ) , Showcase Your Talent Thursday , Tasty Thursday , Whimsy Wednesdays ( Jenny , Kelly , Susan , Ashley ) , what's shakin' link party , Link Party Palooza ( I Heart Nap Time, Lil' Luna, Somewhat Simple, Tatertots & Jello & Today's Creative Blog ) , Friday Favorites , Happy Hour Friday ( Adrianne & Nancy ) , Shine On Fridays ( Kara , Amy , Kirsten , Hannah ) , Kitchen Fun and Crafty Friday , Foodie Friday , Freedom Fridays , Friday Flash Blog , T.G.I.F. Link Party ( Rebecca, Kat, Cathy ) , The Weekend re-Treat , Strut Your Stuff Saturday , Serenity Saturday , SHOW-licious Craft Showcase , Your Great Idea Link Party , Finding the Pretty & Delicious , Super Saturday Show & Tell , Super Saturday Link Party ( Jeni & Made From Pinterest )

Thank you for stopping by. Hope you enjoy the recipe!!!


  1. Perfect for Tandoori , naan , paratta

  2. Omg, who can resist to this stew, quite inviting and makes me hungry..

  3. looks absolutely yummilicious... :)

  4. With all the spices you have added Ambreen this stew must be very aromatic!

  5. oh my goodness Ambreen! You have reallllly made me happy today :) I've been searching for a Nihari recipe that doesn't use Shan Masala! Can this be made with beef instead of chicken?

    1. Henna, sounds like I just read your mind. Sure, you can make it with beef. Add 4 to 6 cups water for that :)

  6. wow, I had nihari when I was in india, now I am vegetarian but still have that taste in my tongue and looking at this bowl bring back all the sweet memories. absolutely delicious.

  7. Me gusta mucho el preparado del pollo sabroso y lindo color,abrazos.

  8. Your dishes are spot on, and thank you......

  9. looks simply yummy and mouthwatering.

  10. Look @ all those flavours! Must be delicious. Gotta try this. Thanks, Ambreen. xo

  11. Ambreen,the chicken curry looks awesome I am sure the fresh spices instead of packed powders make all the difference.yumm.

  12. Looks incredible! I'm definitely adding this onto my meal planner :)

  13. What a delicious looking soup, so bursting with flavour :D


  14. Acabei de conhecer o seu blog,achei maravilhoso.Visite-me:http://algodaotaodoce.blogspot.com.br/
    Siga-me e pegue o meu selinho!!!


    Beijos Marie.

    1. Thank you Marie for the visit & follow. I'll check out yours & follow :)

  15. Simply delicious and lovely looking preparation.

  16. Thank you so very much everyone for your sweet comments :)

  17. Oh, goodness, this sounds perfect for fall!

  18. This looks so delicious. I cannot wait to make this and have leftovers!

  19. I've never heard of this before but I love the sound of it.


  20. Olá amiga,vim retribuir sua carinhosa visita ao meu cantinho.
    Fiquei feliz por seguir-me!!!
    Obrigada,volte sempre e pegue o meu selinho de agradecimento!

    Beijos Marie.

  21. Your chicken stew looks delicious and comforting. What a perfect dish for Fall. :)

  22. Hi Ambreen,
    I've found you participating to the link party Back to Autumn.

    I'm looking forward you visiting http://coccolatime.wordpress.com

    Coccola Time

    1. Welcome Coccola Time! Thank you for visiting, I'll check surely out yours :)

  23. I can almost smell this awesome stew and all the wonderful flavors. Hope you are having a fantastic weekend and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday!
    Miz Helen

  24. I made this tonight and it was awesome! I had to modify a bit because I was missing some spices (black cardamom, star anise), yet it was still divine! This is one of your many recipes I have made for my Pakistani husband, and we both love the dishes!

  25. I made it this evening and it was fantastic! I had to modify a bit as I was missing some spices (black cardamom, star anise) but it still turned out divine. I took your advice to use chicken stock and it certainly gave the dish more depth of flavor. I've made quite a few dishes from your site and neither myself nor my Pakistani husband have been disappointed. Thank you!!!

    1. Thank you Denise! So delighted to hear that you've tried some of my recipes and liked them. It's really kind of you to give positive feedback :)


Thank you for visiting and brightening my day with your sweet comments. I try my best to respond to your comments ASAP, though it might take some time to get back to you.

Ambreen (Simply Sweet n Savory)

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