Recipe: Michael Van De Elzen’s Mulligatawny with Coriander Bread

This South Indian-inspired chicken soup tastes even better the next day. 

Recipe: Michael Van De Elzen

I’ve changed this recipe slightly over time, but the basic flavours of the curry-spiced chicken and sweetness of the sultanas work so well together. This soup tastes better the day after you make it, when all the flavours have bonded together. I tend to make a big batch, then freeze it or pack it into the kid’s lunchboxes.

Serves: 6-8
Time: 60 minutes


2 tbsp olive oil
3 large chicken breasts, roughly torn into strips
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
1 carrot, peeled and finely diced
2 tbsp curry powder
1 small knob ginger, peeled and grated
2 sticks lemongrass, crushed
1 cup paella rice
1 litre chicken stock
2 cups water
4 tbsp raisins
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp honey
coriander butter & ciabatta (recipe, below)


Heat the olive oil in a large pot. Sear the chicken strips until just coloured, then remove and set aside.

Add the onion, carrot, curry powder, lemongrass, and ginger. Sauté for 2 minutes. Add the rice and sauté for another 2 minutes.

Place the chicken back in the pot. Pour in the stock and water, bring to the boil, then simmer for 35 minutes.

Add the raisins and stir in the honey.Season to taste and serve with coriander-buttered bread.

Ciabatta with Coriander Butter


200g unsalted butter
1 tsp coriander seeds, roasted and crushed
1 tsp cumin seeds, roasted and crushed
1 tsp flaky salt
1 handful fresh coriander, chopped
good amount of cracked pepper
1 loaf of ciabatta bread


Preheat the oven to 180°C. Soften the butter and combine with the rest of the ingredients. Slice the ciabatta bread and spread with the coriander butter.

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Place onto a roasting tray and cook for 15 minutes. The bread should have a light golden colour; if not, bake for a further 5 minutes.


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NZ Lifestyle Block This article first appeared in NZ Lifestyle Block Magazine.
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