C46 Dak Bungalow Chicken

'Dak Bungalows' were government sponsored rest houses for travellers, especially government employees, on Indian highways. 'Dak' actually means 'mail' in Hindi, so these places were obviously also used as mail stops or stopovers. There are numerous recipes on the internet and to suggest that there is only one 'true version' would be extremely naive. This particular recipe was inspired by Reza Mahammad's book, "Rice, Spice and all Things Nice" but modified to suit a single portion and converted to a BIR (British Indian Restaurant) rather than a traditional style. Some of the ingredients have been changed to reflect the changed style of cooking.


For 1 Continued...
2 tbspn oil ¼ tspn ground star anise (see note 2)
75 gm onion (1) (prepared weight) ¼ tspn turmeric
1 tspn ginger (grated) ¼ tspn garam masala
1 tspn garlic (crushed) 1 portion c41 precooked chicken
20 gm desiccated coconut ¼ tspn salt
300 ml c46 curry base sauce (see note 1) 1 tspn lemon/lime juice
1 tspn chilli powder 10 gm creamed coconut
1 tspn ground coriander 50 gm onion (2) (prepared weight)



  1. Heat the oil in a wok or heavy pan and cook the onion, stirring regularly, for 2 min.
  2. Add the ginger/garlic paste and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds.
  3. Add the desiccated coconut and cook, stirring regularly, for 2 min or until the coconut turns golden, adding a little c46 base sauce if needed to prevent drying and burning.
  4. Stir in the chilli powder, ground coriander, ground star anise, turmeric and garam masala and cook, stirring, for 1 min, adding a little c46 base sauce if needed to prevent drying and burning.
  5. Add the chicken, salt and 80 ml of c46 base sauce and cook, stirring regularly, for 3 min, adding c46 base sauce as needed to maintain the desired sauce consistency.
  6. Reduce the heat and stir in the lemon/lime juice and creamed coconut and cook until the coconut is fully dissolved, then allow to heat through for 1 min.


  1. Serve with rice and garnish with the crispy onions and freshly chopped coriander.


(1) Dilute the c46 base sauce with 100 ml of water and warm before use. Other base sauces could be used, diluted or not, as required by the specific base sauce.
(2) Star Anise can be purchased already ground, but most people will need to grind their own. It can be done with a pestle and mortar, but it will be much easier to use a spice grinder or similar contraption, maybe grinding about a dozen at one time.

I'd like to know if you enjoyed this so please email admin@cook4one.co.uk – also feel free to ask for help.
The main ingredients
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The finished meal

Creamed Coconut
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