Chicken Masala (Murgi Talkari)

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Descendants of Indian immigrants to Suriname created this dish, which originated in India. It has become a national Surinamese favorite of all the people, prepared, of course, with Surinamese style spices.

Chicken Masala (Murgi Talkari)

(Photo Attributed to Author: Quadell)

Chicken Masala (Murgi Talkari)


(serves 4 to 6)

  • 1 whole chicken, deboned and chopped into large bite-sized pieces
  • 3 to 4 large cloves garlic
  • 1 medium-sized yellow onion
  • 2 tbsp. Masala curry powder
  • 4 tbsp. corn oil
  • 2 Madame Jeanette hot peppers, minced and ground into a pulp (see note, below)
  • ½ to 1 tsp sugar, or to taste (some people like the sweetness to offset and compliment the spicy hot peppers)
  • Salt, to taste
  • Water

Note: If you cannot get Madame Jeanette peppers, you can achieve the same unique “fruity-hot” flavor by using Habanero peppers. Mince them, and then, for every 1 whole pepper, take 1 tsp. each of fresh Mango and Pineapple, put the fruits and the minced pepper(s) in a mortar and pestle (or electric blender) and mash together into a pulp.

  1. In a large saucepan or skillet over medium-high heat, sauté the garlic and onion in the corn oil until soft, fragrant, and translucent. As you sauté, stir in the masala powder.
  2. Now add in the chicken and the peppers, sugar and salt, stir everything together well.
  3. Add in just enough water to barely cover the chicken, reduce heat to medium, and cook until the meat is well done and very tender.
  4. Serve with white rice. Traditional vegetables to go with Chicken Masala are yardlong string beans, pumpkin, cabbage, and potato masala.