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Desi Chicken Shorba

Desi Chicken Shorba

Another dish we all get to see in all restaurants and dhabbas during winter. Many people opt for organic/desi chicken and avoid broiler chicken for various reasons. For a tad bit more on that check out that post Difference Between Desi Chicken And Broiler Chicken in which the topic has been addressed briefly. Honestly I don’t cook much with desi/organic chicken as my palate isn’t “there yet” to accept the flavor and texture change but of course exploring new ways of cooking that involves new ingredients is something I enjoy so here we are…trying out desi chicken shorba.

In a broader term, shorba is gravy or curry or salan and here it indicates a thinner consistency. People enjoy putting bits of teared up roti/naan in a bowl of shorba to get soak and eat them with a spoon. Some prefer sipping the shorba with spoon without any bread involved. So this can be taken as desi soup may be? Since desi chicken has more fat naturally it really tastes good in chilly weather.

Desi chicken is bred in natural environment, it gets to move around a lot that develops their muscle more. This is the reason the meat of desi chicken takes longer to get tender that means more cooking time required. Some use pressure cooker to speed up the process but since yours truly doesn’t own one, it’s gonna be a more “organic way” of cooking…if that is a thing!

The cooking method is fairly simpler than Chicken Qorma and most ingredients are blended and added to the pot to roast the meat rather than browning the onion first to roast meat and then other ingredients follow. Onion, tomatoes, ginger and garlic are blended with some water and added to the pot and chicken is roasted in it with different spices. Then, chicken stock is poured in to provide liquid as cooking medium. Since this chicken takes longer to get cooked the amount of stock is more too plus this is supposed to be thin and runny in consistency. One thing to keep in mind is that cooking time may vary due to many factors. As usual, spice adjustment is always an option.


Desi Chicken Shorba

You have to try this popular style of desi chicken curry! It is delicious yet very simple to make.

Course Main Course
Cuisine Pakistani
Keyword chicken curry, chicken shorba, desi chicken, desi chicken curry, Gluten free
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Servings 6
Author Heenie


  • 1 large onion, roughly sliced
  • 3-4 medium tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 7-8 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and roughly slices
  • 1-2 medium green chillies, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup water
  • cup cooking oil
  • 1 tbsp white cumin
  • tsp salt
  • ½ tsp tumeric powder
  • tsp red chilli powder
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 2-3 star anise, whole
  • 1 kg desi chicken, skinless, washed and cut in 12 pieces
  • 5-6 cups chicken stock
  • fresh green coriander for garnish
  • sliced ginger for garnish
  • sliced green chillies for garnish


  1. In a blender, combine onion, tomatoes, garlic, ginger, green chillies and water. Blend to mix everything well.

  2. In a pot, heat oil and add white cumin. Temper for few seconds.

  3. When cumin starts to crackle, add in blended onion/tomato mix along with salt, red chilli powder, coriander powder, tumeric and star anise. Cook over medium flame for 4-5 minutes while stirring.

  4. When the mixture is reduced in volume and oil separates, add in chicken pieces. Roast in masala for 3-4 minutes.

  5. Pour in chicken stock. Cover the pot and let cook for about 45 minutes.

  6. Garnish with ginger, green chillies and green coriander and serve hot with rice/roti/naan or sip with a spoon!

Recipe Notes

  • Cooking time may vary according to the size or age of the chicken.
  • This can also be cooked in a pressure cooker for about 15-20 minutes.
  • Spices can be adjusted according to preference.
  • This shorba is supposed to be thin and runny.

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