Canberra Chefs at Home: Sanjay Kumar | HerCanberra

Everything you need to know about canberra. ONE DESTINATION.

Canberra Chefs at Home: Sanjay Kumar

Posted on

Food can bring us comfort in the most challenging of times—so why not turn to Canberra’s vibrant chef community for inspiration?

In partnership with local grocery delivery company Alpha Fresh, we asked some of Canberra’s most inspirational chefs to give us their staple recipes for lockdown—complete with shopping lists!

This week, we’re bringing you a taste of one of South Canberra’s most beloved suburban restaurants—Daana. Established in 2015 by talented couple Sanjay and Sunita Kumar, Daana quickly garnered a cult following for exceptional Indian cuisine with a focus on community—case in point, Daana’s regular Karma Kitchen dinners where the proceeds support local charities.

While Daana is still offering takeaway during the ACT lockdown, Sanjay has agreed to share one of his favourite “easy to make” curry recipes (that’s also gluten-free!) with HerCanberra readers so you can cook up a little slice of Daana in your kitchen this weekend.


Serves 4 to 5 | Vegetarians and Vegans can substitute chicken with button mushrooms

Prep time: 15 mins

Cooking time: 20 mins


One can use chicken wings instead of thigh fillet.

Try making it with fresh coriander and kafir lime leaves. You can achieve some Asian flavours as well.


Sanjay’s ingredients were delivered fresh by Alpha Fresh.

  • Chicken thigh fillet – 01 kg
  • Fresh Curry leaves – 05 sprigs
    • Chop the leaves of 4 sprigs. Reserve one sprig for frying.
  • Chopped Ginger -30 gms
  • Chopped garlic -30 gms
  • Lemon juice – 01 lemon
  • Crushed pepper- 01 tablespoon
  • Red chili powder- 1 ½ tablespoon (based on taste preference use hot or mild chili)
    • ½ tablespoon for Marination
    • 01 tablespoon while cooking the ‘masala’
  • Turmeric powder – 1 ½ tablespoon
    • ½ tablespoon for Marination
    • 01 tablespoon while cooking the ‘masala’
  • Mustard Seed- 01 teaspoons
  • Chopped Onions – 200 gms
  • Chopped Tomatoes – 100 gms
  • Chopped red capsicum- 30 gms
  • Refined Cooking Oil – 100 ml (substitute with coconut oil for a unique flavour)
  • Salt to taste- approx. 2-3 teaspoons


Clean, wash, and cut chicken thigh filet for medium size pieces, pat dry.

Mix dry spices ½ teaspoon each of red chili powder and turmeric, lemon juice, 20 ml oil, salt, chopped curry leaves. Marinate chicken pieces in this marinade and allow to rest for at least two hours or overnight if possible.

Heat oil on a flat wide pan, on medium heat, till start smoking lightly, fry one curry leaf sprig and remove aside for garnishing.

Add mustard seed, let it crackle. Add chopped onions. Sautee onions till light golden colour, and wonderful aroma.

Add chopped ginger and garlic, fry for approximately two minutes.

Add remaining dry spices, cook for 30-40 seconds, sprinkle some water. (To prevent spices from burning).

Add chopped tomatoes, cook for 4 to 5 minutes, till the oil starts leaving the sides of the masala in the pan.

Now add the chicken pieces, stir well. Let chicken pieces gets coated evenly with the masala.

Cook on medium heat till chicken is thoroughly cooked, approximately 12-15 mins.

Serve hot, garnish with fried curry leaves, chopped red capsicum.


  • Chicken thigh fillets
  • Lemon
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Onions
  • Tomatoes
  • Green capsicum

Want to make it easy for yourself? Order all these ingredients and more direct to your door via Alpha Fresh, with next day delivery.

Head to to order now

Related Posts

Comments are closed.

© 2021 HerCanberra. All rights reserved. Legal.
Site by Coordinate.