Books by Richard Sayce

Indian Restaurant Curry at Home Volume 1
Indian Restaurant Curry at Home Volume 2 Front Cover
Curry Compendium Cookbook
Keema Dopiaza Curry

BIR Dopiaza Curry Recipe:

If you like onions in abundance, you will certainly like a dopiaza curry. Onions are to be found in various forms – be prepared for an explosion of onion flavour! I think this curry works exceptionally well with pre-cooked keema (main photo). The word ‘dopiaza’ originates from the Persian Farsi language, and means ‘two onions’.

As with most of my curry recipes, about 175-200g of the main protein ingredient should be ample to feed 1-2 people. You can add more to bulk it out. Scroll down for the video.

You can also find this Dopiaza curry recipe in my books CURRY COMPENDIUM and INDIAN RESTAURANT CURRY AT HOME VOLUME 1. All my books are available in both physical and kindle formats.


  • 4-4½ TBSP (55-70ml) Oil, 2 tsp of which is for scorching the Onions
  • 75g Onion, very finely chopped
  • 75-100g Onion, cut into 3cm segments
  • 40-50g Red Pepper, cut into 1-2cm chunks
  • 1½ tsp Ginger/Garlic Paste
  • 1¼ tsp Mix Powder
  • ¼ tsp Chilli Powder
  • ¼-½ tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Kasuri Methi
  • 1 TBSP each of fresh Coriander Stalks and Leaves, finely chopped
  • 330ml+ Base Gravy
  • 4 TBSP Tomato Paste
  • Pre-Cooked Chicken, Tikka, Lamb, Keema, etc.
  • 3-4 splashes of Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 TBSP Onion Paste, optional 


Chicken Tikka Dopiaza Curry


  1. Peel and halve the onion widthways. Cut one half into very fine cubes and chop the other half into 6 segments (imagine the onion half is a pizza). Separate the layers of each segment, then place the segments in a container, sprinkling on ½ tsp of kasuri methi and a tiny pinch of salt. Depending on the size of your onion, you may need to use more than one.
  2. Heat 2 tsp (10ml) of oil in a frying pan on HIGHEST HEAT. When the oil starts to smoke add the onion segments and red pepper chunks. Scorch fry, stirring very often until the onions and peppers are very well caramelised on the outside, but not burnt. Don’t be afraid to let them char.
  3. Empty the onion and red pepper into a container and cover with a lid to help them soften up a little bit before adding to the dopiaza later. If you like them crunchy, leave uncovered.
  4. In the same pan on medium high heat, add the rest of the oil.
  5. Add the very finely chopped onions and cook for 60-90 seconds until the onions are translucent and showing signs of starting to brown. Add the ginger/garlic paste half way into that time. Stir frequently to stop the ginger/garlic paste burning.
  6. Next, add the remaining ½ tsp kasuri methi, mix powder, chilli powder and salt and 30ml of the base gravy to help the spices cook without burning.
  7. Fry for 20-30 seconds stirring diligently, spreading the powdered spices around evenly with the base of the spoon. Add a splash (e.g. 30ml) of base gravy to prevent burning if and when the mixture sticks to the bottom of the pan.


  1. Then turn up the heat to high and add the tomato paste. Fry until the oil separates, and small craters form around the edges of the pan, stirring frequently,
  2. Add the pre-cooked chicken, tikka, lamb, keema, veg, etc., and the coriander stalks. Mix well into the sauce.
  3. Next add 75ml of base gravy, stir once, then leave to fry until the sauce has reduced a little, the oil surfaces, and the small craters appear again.
  4. Add a second 75ml of base gravy, stirring and scraping the bottom and sides of the pan once when first added, allowing the sauce to reduce once again.
  5. Now add 150ml of base gravy, followed immediately by the Worcestershire sauce, onion segments, red pepper chunks and the optional onion paste/bunjarra. Stir and scrape the frying pan once when first added, then leave to cook on high heat for 4-5 minutes. During this time resist fiddling with the curry so that the sauce can catch on the bottom and sides of the pan to thicken and caramelise. You will need to stir and scrape it all together once or twice to avoid the curry burning. Be brave though! The best curries are often left to cook longer than intended. The dopiaza should end up quite thick. Feel free to add extra base gravy in the later stages to get the consistency you want.
  6. Serve, sprinkling the fresh coriander leaves on top.


  • All spoon measurements are level (1 tsp = 5ml, 1 TBSP = 15ml).
  • The onion paste/bunjarra is optional but adds a delicious flavour dimension. You can find the recipe for that in either of my Curry Compendium or Indian Restaurant Curry at Home Volume cookbooks.
  • Enjoy this Dopiaza curry recipe, and please visit the Misty Ricardo’s Curry Kitchen YouTube Channel for lots of Indian recipes.
Watch the Video


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