My father in law thinks "korma" may refer to dates, but it's supposed to be derived from the Urdu term for braising. The other two words "shahi" and "murgh" seem to indicate the Farsi words for king and chicken. Plus the dish is supposedly an import from Persia.

I've seen it with made with raisins, but is there an authentic version that uses dates? Or perhaps a separate Persian dish that resembles korma?

  • What is your actual question? Are you asking what Korma is? If so I don't think there's a complete answer, there are many regional variations. – GdD Mar 12 '14 at 9:23
  • As a Persian, I never heard of a food named what you mentioned, with or without dates. – Mehraban Mar 12 '14 at 12:03
  • Korma is a Parsi dish of Persian origin. I'm asking if anyone has a recipe for the original Persian Dish, the dish that ultimately became Korma. Perhaps there is a fesenjan-like braise that incorporates palm dates? Call it culinary anthropology. If nobody shares the dish, then the species will go extinct. – Calico Marty Mar 12 '14 at 18:09

As an Iranian, I've never heard of this dish and I'm certain there is no braise or stew with dates in it (at least not in persian cuisine). However the name sounds persian and your father in law is close, except date in persian is spelled "Khorma" (it has an h).

The word "Korma" in this dish name does not mean "date" and it simply means "braise" which is also a reason to not look for a braise with dates in it. Korma is an Urdu word which you can verify via link below.


Speaking of culinary anthropology, in the middle ages, Persians brought their cuisine to the Indian subcontinent, and to this day a lot of Persian and Hindi names for many dishes are similar. I would safely assume this dish is Hindu or Indian. However, if you are looking to make a stew with chicken and spices, you are welcome to visit my blog and try my Curry Stew which is a delicious Persian/Indian concoction. It does have chicken and a yummy curry sauce. Here is the link, hope you can try and enjoy it. Good luck.


  • Is this stew actually something you'd call "korma"? It sounds like it's just a different stew, not really what the OP is asking about. – Cascabel Mar 13 '14 at 0:02
  • No, this stew is not "korma" and as I said in my response "I've never heard of this dish". The OP asks later for a similar dish, and I suggested a curry stew with chicken that is made of very similar ingredients to "murghe shahi korma". – Sarineh at tumblingpots.com Mar 13 '14 at 2:09
  • Okay, I'm just trying to clarify, because we prefer answers that focus on the question, so the link looks a bit out of place. We're especially careful about asking people to only link to their blogs/sites/stores if it helps answer the question, so this looks borderline. It's unclear, so I'll leave it - it might be an Iranian/Persian dish of some relation to the Indian one? – Cascabel Mar 13 '14 at 3:05
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    The questioner is under the impression that perhaps there is a persian stew/braise variation out there with "Korma" or dates in it, which is the problem. There is no such a braise, and "Korma" is a word for "braise" in Urdo. – Sarineh at tumblingpots.com Mar 13 '14 at 5:54

In northern Indian cuisine, "murgh shahi korma" would be chicken (murgh) in a mild creamy sauce (korma) - although as someone rightfully comments there are lots of regional variations - with the term shahi meaning loosely "fit for a king", and usually indicating a dish made rich with the presence of cream and nuts.

Dried fruit (raisins, etc.) would be a common addition, since it's a Mughlai dish.

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