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This article was first published 1 year ago  » Getahead » Food » Ramzan Recipe: Murgh Musallam

Ramzan Recipe: Murgh Musallam

April 10, 2023 13:39 IST
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Several Indian spices come together to create Murgh Musallam, a Middle Eastern delicacy, which was once served to the sultans of Delhi.

Chef Narayan Dutta Sharma marinates the chicken in ginger, garlic, lemon juice, yoghurt and garam masala, before stuffing it with half-cooked rice and peas.

He later bastes it with a spice mixture, bakes it in a water bath and serves it garnished with saffron and chopped coriander. 

Chef Sharma once worked at Delhi Durbar and perhaps this Mughlai recipe was picked up duirng his tenure there.

Photograph: Kind courtesy Barbeque Nation Hospitality Limited

Murgh Musallam

Serves: 3-4


  • 2 tbsp chopped ginger
  • 10 garlic pods, chopped
  • 1 cup yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 kg whole chicken, washed and drained
  • 1 cup raw long-grain rice
  • ¾ cup fresh peas
  • 6 tej patta or bay leaves 
  • 1 cup ghee
  • 2 chopped onions
  • 225 gm sliced tomatoes
  • 2 cups hot water + 300 ml for baking the chicken in a water bath
  • 2 tbsp salt 
  • 2 tsp garam masala powder
  • 1 tbsp haldi or turmeric powder
  • 8 lavang or cloves
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 1 bara elaichi or black cardamom
  • 4 green elaichi or cardamon
  • 1 tsp red chilly powder
  • 1 tbsp roasted dhania or coriander powder
  • 1 tsp jeera or cumin seeds
  • ½ tsp kesar or saffron
  • 50 gm chopped green dhania or coriander or cilantro leaves, for garnish
  • 2-3 chopped green chillies, for garnish


  • In a bowl combine 3 of the chopped garlic pods, 1 tbsp ginger, 1 tsp garam masala, 1 tbsp salt, pinch turmeric powder, half of the yoghurt, and the lemon juice, and mix to form a smooth paste.
  • Make small cuts in the chicken flesh and rub the paste all over and inside the cavity.
    Keep aside for 2 hours.
  • Boil 2 cups water in a heavy-bottomed saucepan.
    Half cook the rice with the peas, the remaining garlic, 4 cloves, black peppercorns, 1 tbsp salt, the 1 pod black cardamom, 4 of the bay leaves.
    Once done, stuff the chicken with the rice and peas mixture.
  • Heat a few tbsp ghee in a large frying pan over low to medium heat and fry the chicken until brown all over. 
    Flip so that it cooks evenly but be careful not to spill the stuffing.
    Take off heat.
  • In another frying pan, fry ½ of the chopped onions in the remaining ghee with the remaining 2 bay leaves, the remaining cloves, cardamom until golden.
    Add the remaining turmeric powder and the chilly powder.
  • Make a paste by grinding together the chopped coriander, cumin seeds, remaining chopped onions and the grated ginger.
    Transfer into the frying pan. 
    Stir for 5-10 minutes, until the ghee starts to separate.
    Add the remaining yoghurt, the sliced tomatoes, 1 tbsp salt.
    Add the chicken to the pan and baste with the spice mixture.
    Take off heat.
  • Pour 300 ml water in a baking tray. 
    Add the chicken along with the spice mixture into the tray in the water.
    Cover, and bake in a moderately hot oven (200°C) for 1 hour.
    If done, take out out of the oven, and keep aside to cool.
    Garnish with saffron, remaining garam masala, chopped green chillies and the chopped coriander leaves before serving.

Chef ND Sharma

Chef Narayan Dutt Sharma is the culinary head of Barbeque Nation Hospitality Limited. 

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