• Exotic, yet down to earth, bunny chow came from Durban and won the hearts of the whole country!

    Spiced butter chicken bunny chow

    Serves: 6
    Cooking Time: 2 hours plus extra for rising


    • BREAD

    • 250ml (1 cup) milk
    • 30ml (2 tbsp) butter
    • 375ml warm water
    • 2 x 10g sachets instant dry yeast
    • 30ml (2 tbsp) sugar
    • pinch of salt
    • 720g cake flour
    • MASALA

    • 45ml (3 tbsp) mild curry powder
    • 45ml (3 tbsp) mild chilli powder
    • 5ml (1 tsp) cayenne pepper
    • 5ml (1 tsp) garlic powder
    • 5ml (1 tsp) ginger powder

    • 30ml (2 tbsp) olive oil
    • 60ml (¼ cup) butter
    • 1 onion, sliced
    • 5 fresh curry leaves
    • 1 cinnamon stick
    • 1kg deboned chicken, skin on and cubed
    • 45ml (3 tbsp) masala (see ingredients above)
    • 5ml (1 tsp) ground turmeric
    • 15ml (1 tbsp) fresh ginger, crushed
    • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
    • 500ml (2 cups) buttermilk
    • 2 tomatoes, diced
    • 125ml (½ cup) fresh cream
    • 5ml (1 tsp) cornflour
    • 3 potatoes, peeled and cubed
    • 1 red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
    • 10ml (2 tsp) garam masala
    • salt, to taste
    • fresh coriander, to serve



    To make the bread, heat the milk and butter in a pot for 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.


    Pour 125ml (½ cup) of the water in a bowl. Sprinkle the yeast over the water and stir to combine. Set aside for about 2 minutes.


    In a large bowl, combine the sugar with the salt and the remaining water and mix to combine well.


    Add the sugar mixture to the butter mixture, stirring well to combine. Stir in the foaming yeast mixture.


    Gently mix in the flour, a cup at a time. When the dough becomes difficult to work with in the bowl, turn it out onto a floured work surface and knead until the dough is smooth, not sticky. Place in a large, greased bowl, cover and leave to rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour 30 minutes.


    Punch the dough down and knead again on a floured surface for about 5 minutes. Divide the dough into 6 equalsized pieces. Butter 6 small cake tins and sprinkle lightly with flour. Place a piece of dough into each cake tin, cover and leave to rise again until doubled in size, about 2 hours


    Preheat the oven to 180°C.


    Bake the loaves until golden, about 45 minutes. Remove and set aside to cool completely.


    Mix together all the ingredients for the masala.


    For the filling, melt the oil and butter in a frying pan and sauté the onion, curry leaves and cinnamon until the onion is golden. Add the chicken and stir-fry until almost cooked through.


    Add the masala, turmeric, ginger, garlic, buttermilk and tomato.


    Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes.


    Mix the fresh cream and cornflour well together and add to the curry, together with the potatoes and chilli.


    Reduce the heat and simmer on low until the chicken is tender and the potatoes are cooked. Keep an eye on it to make sure the bottom of the pot does not burn, adding a little water if necessary.


    Add the garam masala and adjust the seasoning, adding salt if necessary. Simmer for a further 10 minutes until the sauce thickens slightly.


    Cut each loaf across the top and remove a “lid” from the top of thebread. Scoop out the soft inside dough, leaving the crust to form a bowl.


    Spoon the chicken mixture into the loaves and serve garnished with coriander. The scooped-out bread can be used to mop up any leftover curry.


    Recipe by ANNA MONTALI Preparation by NOMVUSELELO MNCUBE Photograph by GRAEME BORCHERS

    Imka Webb

    Imka Webb is a freelance digital marketing expert and the digital editor of Food & Home Entertaining magazine.  www.imkawebb.com