Diwali recipe



Try this delicious recipe from The Cinnamon Collection

Executive Chef Vivek Singh and his crew are welcoming the Indian Festival season in London with a series of exciting events across The Cinnamon Collection to cap off the ‘A Life In Spice’ celebrations honouring The Cinnamon Club’s 20th Anniversary. Time & Leisure has teamed up with The Cinnamon Collection to bring you Vivek Singh’s very own recipe for this delicious Old Delhi-style butter chicken.





  • 2 x 750g free-range poussin, skinned and each cut in half along the backbone (alternatively use 800g  bonnet chicken thighs cut into two) For the marinade:
  • 120g Greek yoghurt
  • 2 tbsp ginger and garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • Juice of lemon
  • 3 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp garam masalaFor the sauce:
  • 1kg tomatoes
  • 125ml water
  • 5cm piece of ginger, peeled, half crushed and half finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 4 green cardamom pods
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp red chilli powder
  • 80g butter, diced
  • 2 green chillies, slit lengthways
  • 75ml single cream
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp dried fenugreek leaves, crushed between your fingers
  • 1 tbsp sugar


1. First prepare the chicken. Make small cuts all over the chicken pieces with a sharp knife to help the marinade penetrate. To prepare the marinade, mix together the yoghurt with all the other ingredients for the marinade in a deep bowl. Smear the cut chicken with the marinade, cover and set aside in the fridge for 10 minutes.

2. Cook the chicken in an oven preheated to 220C for 13-15 minutes. You may need to turn the pieces after 8-10 minutes or so to ensure they colour evenly on both sides. Cut the cooked chicken into smaller pieces as per your preference. The chicken should not be completely cooked at this point as it will be simmered for a few more minutes in the sauce. Strain off the juices through a fine sieve and set aside.

3. For the sauce, slice the tomatoes in half and place in a pan with the water, crushed ginger, garlic, cardamon, cloves and bay leaf and simmer until the tomatoes have completely disintegrated. Now blend this tomato broth with a hand-held blender and pass it through a sieve to obtain a smooth purée.

4. Return to a clean pan, add the chilli powder and simmer for 12-15 minutes. It should slowly begin to thicken. When the sauce turns glossy, add the chicken pieces and the reserved roasting juices. Then add a cup of water and simmer for about 3-5 minutes until the water is absorbed and the sauce returns to its original glossy consistency.

5. Slowly whisk in the butter, a couple of pieces at a time, and simmer for 6-8 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is beginning to acquire a glaze.

6. Add the chopped ginger, green chillies and cream and simmer for a minute or two longer, taking care that the sauce does not split. Stir in the salt, crushed fenugreek leaves and garam masala, then check the seasoning and add the sugar.

7. Serve with naan bread or pilau rice.

  • Festivities will begin at the Collection’s flagship restaurant, The Cinnamon Club, and run throughout the winter to mark some of the biggest dates in the Indian festival calendar – Bijoya, Diwali and later, Holi.