International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Murgh Dopiaza

Murgh dopiaza Indian chicken curry with onions

(Indian chicken curry with onions)

Image by Bob Peters

Average: 3.6 (12 votes)

Dopiaza is a type of Indian curry where meat is cooked with lots of onions. It is especially popular in the southeast Indian city of Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh state. The word means "two onions" and indicates that onions are added at two different times during cooking.

A general rule of thumb is that the amount of onions used should be double the amount of meat. Dopiaza is made with lamb, chicken or fish. There are also vegetarian versions using okra.

4 to 6 servings


  • Onions, chopped -- 2
  • Garlic, chopped -- 4 cloves
  • Gingerroot, chopped -- 1 tablespoon
  • Hot chile peppers, chopped -- 3
  • Oil or ghee -- 3 or 4 tablespoons
  • Ground coriander -- 1 tablespoon
  • Ground cumin -- 1 tablespoon
  • Turmeric -- 1 teaspoon
  • Cayenne pepper -- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon
  • Onions, thinly sliced -- 3
  • Chicken breast or thighs, boneless, skinless, cut into 1-inch cubes -- 1 1/2 to 2 pounds
  • Stock or water -- 2 cups
  • Saffron (optional) -- pinch
  • Salt and pepper -- to taste
  • Whole milk yogurt -- 1 1/2 cups


  1. Place the two chopped onions, garlic, ginger and chile peppers in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth. Add a little water if necessary.
  2. Heat the oil or ghee in a heavy-bottomed skillet, wok or kadhai over medium flame. Add the coriander, cumin, turmeric and cayenne and stir into the oil to lightly toast, about 30 seconds. Add the onion puree and saute until cooked through and somewhat reduced, 4 or 5 minutes. Add the sliced onions and sauté over low heat until wilted and lightly browned, another 4 or 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the chicken, stock or water, saffron, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for about 20 to 30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and tender.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in the yogurt. Adjust seasoning, return to flame and reheat just until the sauce just begins to bubble. Don't allow the dish to boil after adding the yogurt or it could curdle. Remove from heat and serve.

Dopiaza Variations

  • Gosht dopiaza: Substitute mutton or lamb for the chicken. Increase simmering time to 45 to 60 minutes.
  • Bhindi dopiaza: Substitute trimmed whole okra for the chicken and simmer only 15 to 20 minutes. A cup or so of chopped tomatoes is often added with the okra.
  • Some recipes say the sliced onions should not be sautéed first, but rather added raw with the stock or water.
  • A cup or so of chopped tomatoes can be stirred in with the stock or water if you like.
  • Adjust the heat of this dish by adding more or less chili peppers or cayenne.


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