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Recipe Swap: Green Chicken Curry and Butter Chicken

Most of us have our go-to recipes, be it for amid-week lunch, a dinner party pleaser or a sumptuous cake that Nigella Lawson would be proud of. In case you’re stuck in a food rut, however, here are some of our readers’ failsafe recipes from around theworld to add to your repertoire. Bon appétit!

Nothing says lazy Sunday like staying in with a movie and a curry. You’ll never need to order takeaway again with these two delicious make-ahead recipes, representing two cuisines that are famous for curries.

Dinner idea: Thai Green Chicken Curry

“This is one of our family faves; mention curry and the kids say yum! It has to be one of the few dishes where they never complain about the heat of the chilli. It’s full of flavour and punch – and now we refuse to order green curry when we’re out.”
– Mary-Anne Vicente, Australia

Thai Green Chicken Curry
This bowl of Thai Green Curry is perfect for a weeknight dinner


Paste (makes 2 portions)

• 4 long green chillies (more or fewer to taste), seeded and chopped

• 3cm piece of ginger, peeled

• 2 stalks of lemongrass

• 2 stalks of coriander, chopped

• 4 kaffir lime leaves, roughly chopped

• 4 cloves garlic, chopped

• 2 shallots, chopped

• ¼ cup chopped Thai basil

• ½ teaspoon cumin powder

• 1 tablespoon peanut oil


• 1 tablespoon peanut oil

• 750g chicken breast (or thigh), 3cm cubes

• 300ml coconut cream

•175g green beans, trimmed and halved

• 4 kaffir lime leaves

• 1 tablespoon fish sauce

• 1 teaspoon caster sugar

• Garnish: coriander sprigs, Thai basil leaves, lime wedges


1. To make the curry paste, place all ingredients into a food processor with two tablespoons of water. Blend to a smooth paste.

2. Heat oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add half the curry paste, stirring for one minute or until fragrant. (The remaining curry paste will last in the fridge for a week.)

3. Add the chicken, stirring, until almost cooked through. Stir in the coconut cream, beans and lime leaves, and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, then mix in the fish sauce and sugar.

4. Garnish with chopped coriander and Thai basil leaves and serve with Thai jasmine steamed rice.

Lighter Indian Butter Chicken
This recipe uses less cream but doesn’t compromise on flavour

Dinner idea: Indian Butter Chicken

“Indian is my husband’s favourite cuisine, so I have tried several butter chicken recipes. This recipe was passed on by my brother-in-law, a chef, and it’s a clear winner: it uses less cream but doesn’t compromise on flavour.”
– Rachel Massey, New Zealand



• 2 teaspoons garam masala

• 2 teaspoons ground coriander

• 1 teaspoon (or more) chilli powder

• 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger

• 3 cloves garlic, crushed

• 2 tablespoons white vinegar

• ¼ cup tomato paste

• ½ cup yoghurt


• 1kg chicken breast, cut into chunks

• 80g butter

• 1 large onion, finely chopped

• 1 cinnamon stick

• 4 cardamom pods, bruised

• 1 teaspoon salt

• 3 teaspoons sweet paprika

• 425g can tomato puree

• ¾ cup chicken stock

• 1 cup cream


1. Mix together curry paste ingredients then marinate the chicken overnight.

2. To make the curry, heat butter in a large saucepan, then fry the onion, cinnamon and cardamom until the onion has turned golden brown. Add chicken and marinade and cook for five minutes.

3. Next, add paprika, tomato puree, salt and stock and simmer for 10 minutes, uncovered. Then add the cream and cook until the chicken is tender.

4. Serve with basmati rice and naan bread.


This article first appeared in the September 2016 issue of Expat Living. You can purchase a copy for the full article, or Subscribe now so you never miss an issue!

Check out many more recipes here, or if you have a fail-safe recipe you’d like to submit for our next issue, send an email titled “Great Recipe Swap” to Beate at contribute@expatliving.sg with your recipe, a photo of yourself and a few words about your dish. Thanks, Chef!