Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Lahori Chargha

Lahori Chargha 

Marinate, Steam and Fry 

The best part about being part of social networking Culinary groups is the amazing number of ideas you can get and so when someone posted about Chicken Chargha I immediately knew I must learn more about this interesting delicacy from our beautiful neighboring country.

To be fair there is precious little information on the internet about the dish except for many many recipes and  after browsing through many a recipe I decided on the recipe shared by Faiza from Pakistan Kitchen

To be fair I mostly followed her recipe to the T except for a few change of method of cooking. I left the food colouring since I do not particularly care for food colours and  I marinated it much longer than the recipe stated and I used ghee which I know is an essential part of lahori cuisine.

I particularly liked her idea of using eggs instead of yogurt which gives a better binding. I served the dish with some ghee pilaf since the chicken basically being a fried dry item goes wonderfully well with ghee laden pilaf which gives the moisture in between crispy soft chicken. The beauty of the recipe is that you have to steam and fry the whole chicken without making pieces from it.

So here goes this amazing recipe from the historical city of  Lahore :-

Serves 6 to 7

2 medium sized skinless whole chicken (Each chicken should approximately weight about 800gm to 1 kilogram)
1 heaped tsp cumin powder
1.5 tbsp ginger garlic paste
2 eggs
1/2 cup lemon juice
1.5 tbsp chili flakes
1 heaped tsp red hot chili powder
1.5 to 2 tsp salt
1 tsp garam masala

100gm ghee
2 cups of refined oil

Chaat masala to taste - You need at least half a cup
Lemon to serve
onion rings for serving

Simply mix the eggs, cumin powder, garam masala, ginger garlic paste, lemon juice , salt , chili flakes and chili powder to form a paste. Make slits all over the chicken so that the marinate penetrates it well  . Once the slits are made massage the marinate into the two chicken and leave it to marinate for 3 hours to 4 hours.

Now bring a large bowl of water to a boil and place a flat strainer on top of it and place the chicken on it and cover and steam for 30 minutes to 35 minutes.

Heat the ghee and oil together and fry the chicken for 7 minutes to 10 minutes turning it 4 times. Serve with lots of chaat masala sprinkled on it and lemon juice and some salad if eating it as a snack or you can team it up with some ghee pilaf.


  1. achha why does it look like you cut the chicken before frying it? Did you? Doesn't it make more sense because that way it will be crisper? just asking.

    1. Ah well I used 1 whole chicken and 1 cut up chicken for better photogrpahy of individual pieces :) To be fair the traditional chargha is steamed whole and fried whole and with that some of the marinate stays put inside the cavity which gives it an amazing taste :)