In Hindi, do (pronounced like the English though) means two and pyaza means onions. The term describes a dish using twice the normal amount of onions. The resulting dish is bursting with flavour and a bit of sweetness. This dish is popular in Bengal and has Muslim origins. Bengal had its share of Muslim influences in art, architecture and cuisine because of Muslim rulers and Mughal governors. Please don’t be alarmed by the amount of onions or spices – you can’t expect anything less in a chicken and onion dish. This is a yummy and likeable dish.
A great alternative to butter chicken or chicken tikka masala, this could be your go to as far as Indian curries go.
1 kg boneless, skinless chicken thighs
8-9 shallots, peeled
6 medium sized onions
8 small baby potatoes
2 teaspoons chilli powder
½ cup Greek style yoghurt
5 tablespoons of canola or other vegetable oil
6 plump garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 bay leaves
7-8 centimetres piece of ginger, finely grated or pureed
5-6 centimetre piece of cinnamon
2 teaspoons black peppercorns
2 whole red chillies
½ teaspoon turmeric
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 tablespoon butter
½ teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon garam masala powder
Trim off any excess fat from the chicken thighs and cut each thigh into three pieces.
Coarsely grate three of the onions and squeeze out the juice through a cloth. Set aside the juice as well as the residue. Slice the remaining three onions and set aside.
Peel the potatoes and parboil them for 8 minutes in boiling water.
Heat 3 tablespoons of the oil in a heavy saucepan and fry the sliced onions until brown and crispy. Remove, drain on kitchen paper and set aside.
Add the remaining oil, fry the shallots for 4-5 minutes. Remove and set aside. In the same oil, add the grated onion, garlic, bay leaves, cinnamon and cardamom. After a couple of minutes, add the peppercorns, cloves, whole red chillies, followed by the ginger puree, chilli paste and turmeric. Stir continuously. Fry on low heat for a few minutes and if the spices are sticking to the bottom of the pan, add a few spoons of water.
Add the chicken and saute for a few minutes in the spice paste before adding the onion juice, tomatoes and potatoes.
Stir in the butter, yoghurt, and sugar. Mix well and cook on medium heat for five minutes before adding the shallots. Season with salt. Continue cooking for another 5-6 minutes until the chicken is cooked.
Just before serving, sprinkle the fried onions and garam masala powder. Serve hot with rice or Naan. Serves 6-8.