In the 'family suppers' episode of Perfect, Paul Merrett serves up the ultimate curry night dishes.


  • For the Murgh chicken skewers:

  • 2 eggs

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • 2 teaspoons chilli powder

  • 2 tablespoons veg oil

  • 12 ground cashew nuts

  • 1 onion very, very, very, very,very finely chopped

  • 4 teaspoons very finely grated ginger

  • 60g coriander leaves – finely chopped

  • 1 teaspoon garam masala

  • 1kg minced chicken breast

  • You will need soaked long wooden skewers

  • For the brinjal bhaji:

  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes

  • 1 onion very finely chopped

  • 2 inches ginger grated

  • 4 cloves garlic chopped

  • 2 aubergines – cut into 4cm long wedges

  • ½ teaspoon black mustard seeds

  • ½ teaspoon yellow mustard seeds

  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds

  • 10 curry leaves

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • Good pinch of dried flaked chilli

  • ½ teaspoon turmeric

  • Little yoghurt

  • Chopped coriander to finish

  • For the easy basmati:

  • vegetable oil

  • 400g basmati rice, washed thoroughly

  • 1 onion, peeled and finely sliced

  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeld and finely chopped

  • Optional spices – 1 tsp turmeric, ½ tsp dried chilli flakes, 2 inch cinnamon stick, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp fennel seeds

  • Minted mango yoghurt:

  • 1 small tub Natural yoghurt

  • 2-3 tbsp Geeta’s premium mango chutney

  • 1-2 tbsp Cheapo shop bought mint sauce

  • Spicy and plain popaddoms to serve


  • For the skewers::

  • 1.

    Whisk eggs, cumin, pepper, salt, chilli powder & veg oil together in a bowl

  • 2.

    Fold in cashew nuts, onion, ginger coriander leaves and garam masala then mix with chicken. Divide mix into 20, With wet hands mould around skewers to form long sausage shapes

  • 3.

    Use a flat griddle plate or a large non stick pan or a ribbed griddle pan to cook the skewers until they are caramelised a little round the edges and cooked through

  • For the bhaji::

  • 1.

    Firstly fry the onion, garlic & ginger until really brown – this can take 10 minutes

  • 2.

    Add the tin of tomatoes and simmer until fairly dry – put to one side

  • 3.

    Cook the aubergine wedges on a ribbed griddle pan until they are charred with criss-cross lines – put to one side

  • 4.

    In a shallow sauce pan heat a little veg oil

  • 5.

    Add all the spices and fry for a second. Add half the tomato mix

  • 6.

    Add ¼ pint of water

  • 7.

    Add aubergine

  • 8.

    Simmer for 15 minutes

  • 9.

    Should not be to ‘saucy’

  • 10.

    Finish with a blob of coriander yoghurt on top

  • For the rice::

  • 1.

    Add everything to a pan with hot oil and get it all sizzling, pour in the cold water ands bring to a boil, cover with a tight fitting lid and boil for 5 minutes then turn it off and leave to stand for 20 still covered

  • 2.

    Fork through and serve



• Any butcher should readily agree to mince a chicken breast or two. Tell him (or her of course) to mince on a medium blade.

• Soaking skewers before cooking with then stops them from burning during cooking

• Ground spices and Curry Powders must always be used fresh and kept in air tight containers. Older stale spices will add nothing but grit to your finished dish and leave you feeling disappointed with the results. The very best results will always come from grinding your own spices from whole seeds just before using them.

• One of the biggest mistakes made when cooking Indian food is that no salt is added on the assumption that there is so much flavour from the spices that you don't need salt. This is wrong and you should always taste your dish and season towards the end if needed

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