A classic chicken Balti from The Curry Guy’s latest cookbook One Pot

One Pot is the latest cookbook from The Curry Guy, Dan Toombs. It’s a collection of over 150 curries (and other spicy dishes) from around the world. To research each recipe, Dan and his wife spent two years travelling through India, Sri Lanka, Southeast Asia, Europe, and The United States. He talked his way into countless kitchens to pick up tips, tricks and recipes from chefs along the way. The result is a cookbook packed with recipes that don’t just sound delicious and look delicious; based on the few I’ve begun making, they taste delicious too.

One Pot is a feast for your eyes and as I paged through each recipe, I found myself tagging and tagging and tagging. I’m currently making one of his recipes a week and thus far none have disappointed. If you love curry and food packed with spice and flavour, this is a cookbook you will love and use well.

There’s an incredible variety of curries –from chicken Balti to beef madras, Malaysian fish curry to Sri Lankan Dal curry, and everything in between. In addition to the many curries, are what he terms as spicy dishes like his Korean Braised Beef Short Ribs which are a flavor bomb of a recipe. There are also some soups like Pho and a Mexican street corn soup and condiments.

As to be expected from a book with recipes from around the world, many ingredients are specialty – and often not the easiest to find. In the beginning of the cookbook, Dan gives details of ingredients and where to source them. In addition, he also explains how to substitute ingredients if you’re unable to find them.

Dietary notes: This cookbook is for those who are flexible with their diets. Most recipes contain animal proteins with a handful being strictly vegan or vegetarian.

The Curry Guy One Pot by Dan Toombs is published by Quadrille distributed in South Africa by Jonathan Ball Publishers. It is available here.

The recipe I picked to share with you is the Chicken Balti, which is described as one of the basic curry recipes. It comes together in no longer than 30 minutes with very little fuss, just one pot and results in a delicious curry that has a depth of flavor. It is just a small taste of what’s inside One Pot.

The two spice mixes used for this Chicken Balti are a Madras Curry Powder and Tandoori Masala. I got both from Cape Herb & Spices. If you can’t find that you should be able to get these spice blends from an Indian spice store.  

Chicken Balti from The Curry Guy

Chicken Balti is a basic curry recipe that requires very little fuss and time. Ginger and garlic are roughly chopped and added to a pan with raw chicken, curry spice blends and tomato to create a delicious curry in no time.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Course: Mains
Dietary: Dairy Free, Gluten Free, No Added Sugar, Nut Free, Refined Sugar Free
Servings: 2


  • 2 tablespoons neutral oil
  • ½ large onion finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • ½ inch fresh ginger grated or finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Tandoori Masala
  • 2 teaspoons Madras curry powder
  • 2 fresh green chilli peppers
  • ½ large red or green pepper roughly chopped
  • 1 tomato diced
  • 2-4 tablespoons unseasoned passata
  • 225 grams chicken breasts skinned and cut into 2.5cm chunks
  • ½ cup water or chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons coriander or parsley
  • salt to taste
  • juice of 1 lime


  • Heat the oil in a frying pan over a high heat. Toss in the chopped onion and fry for 5 minutes, until soft and translucent. Add the garlic and ginger and stir to combine, about 30 seconds.
  • Toss in the chicken pieces and brown them in the onion mixture. Sir continuously to brown the chicken evenly. Add 1/2 cup water/chicken stock. You can add more to assist in cooking the chicken, but do not add too much as Baltis are usually quite dry curries.
  • Simmer for about 8 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and you have a thick sauce. Add in the vinegar and simmer for another minute. Just before serving sprinkle the parsley (or coriander) and a squeeze of lime into the curry. Season with salt to taste.

Recipe is reprinted with permission from the publisher. Images are by Nutreats Food Photography Studio

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