Cooking for Househusbands – Chicken “Do Piaza”

In these days of “Butter” Chicken – “Kadhai” Chicken – “Handi” Chicken etc – it is very rare to get an authentic Chicken “Do Piaza”.

“Do Piaza” is also spelt Do Pyaza” or Do Pyaaza”

I will use the spelling DO PIAZA 

A few days ago – a Foodie Friend uploaded a picture of the Chicken “Do Piaza” she had cooked on the Social Media.

Looking at the picture of  “Do Piaza” brought back nostalgic mouthwatering memories of the “Do Piaza” I used to cook for my friends many years ago during my Navy days.

(When we invited friends for dinner – my “pure vegetarian” wife would cook the vegtetarian food – and I would cook the non-vegetarian dish)

So – Dear Friends – let me delve deep into my Foodie Writing Archives – and pull out this recipe on “Do Piaza” which I wrote more than 25 years ago.

The recipe also features in my Foodie Adventures Book APPETITE FOR A STROLL

Happy Cooking and Happy Eating…

CHICKEN DO PIAZA MADE SIMPLE

An Easy Recipe for the ultimate Mughlai Dish By Vikram Karve 

From my Foodie Writing Archives:

One of my favourite Recipes – Chicken Do Piaza – my favourite Chicken Curry.

It is easy to cook and tastes delicious.

If you prefer mutton, then mutton do piaza can be cooked the same way.

Only thing, before you marinate mutton, rubbing a bit of raw papaya paste makes it a bit tender.

Sadly, very few restaurants in Pune feature Do Piaza on their menu, since most Indian Non-Veg Cuisine (in restaurants out here in Pune) is either Kolhapuri or Punjabi.

Even the minuscule few eateries that have Do Piaza on their menus, and serve this dish, do such a terrible job of cooking it – they almost “murder” this Mughlai Delicacy.

So it is best to cook this wonderful dish at home.  

THE STORY OF DO PIAZA – Why This Dish is called Do Piaza”  

If you want a first impression of the authenticity of a “Mughlai” Restaurant – the first dish you must order and taste is a “Do Piaza”

This will give you an idea of the standard and authenticity of Mughlai Cuisine you can expect there.

Indeed – “Do Piaza” may be considered the culinary benchmark to judge and evaluate a Mughlai Restaurant.

And – if Mutton or Chicken Do Piaza does not figure on the menu – you better order Chinese or Continental – or stick to the ubiquitous “Punjabi”  Butter Chicken-Naan routine…!!!

Do Piaza” means “two onions” – or rather – “double onions”.

Now – how did this dish get its name…?

Maybe it’s apocryphal – but legend has it that this delicious dish was invented by Mullah Do-Piaza – a renowned and celebrated cook at the Mughal Emperor Akbar’s court – who was one of the Navaratnas (Nine Jewels) at Akbar’s Court.

It is said he could conjure up culinary delights using only two onions – and a Mughlai Dish cooked in that particular style is called a “Do Piaza”.

Water is not used at all when cooking a “Do Piaza”.

Onions (Piaz or Pyaaz) are used twice.

Hence – the name “Do” (“Two”) Piaza (Pyaza/Pyaaza) – spell it whichever way you like.  

The Urdu or Hindi – the word “Do” refers to the number 2 (Two).

Pyiaz means Onion.

Since Onions are used Twice in the recipe – the dish is called “Do Piaza” (Two Onions).

So – we have the first “Piaza” – and then – the second “Piaza”  making it Do Piaza”…!!!

Come to Kitchen with me Dear Reader and Fellow Foodie.

Let us together cook a Chicken Do Piaza.

It takes time – but it’s easy.

RECIPE FOR CHICKEN DO PIAZA 

THE FIRST PIAZA 

First cut a generous number of onions into rings.

Yes – round separate onion rings.

The more the onion rings – the sweeter the gravy.

Now – in a large cooking vessel – put in the chicken pieces.

Add a liberal amount of curd – and mix well with the chicken pieces.

Copiously layer the chicken-curd mixture with the onion rings.

Cover with a tight lid and set aside to marinate for at least an hour.

Remember – do not vigorously mix in the onion rings – just liberally layer the chicken-curd mélange with the onion rings.

After marinating the chicken-curd-onion ring mixture for an hour or more – place the vessel with the marinated chicken on a slow fire with the lid on.

Let the chicken cook slowly in its own juices – and the juices released by the onion rings.

Cook on slow fire with lid covered till the onion rings are reduced to a pulp.

When most of the liquid dries up – and the chicken looks succulent and cooked – shut the flame.

The first “Piaza” is ready.

Yes – Dear Reader – this is the First “Piaza”…!!!

THE SECOND PIAZA

In another pan – pour in and heat pure ghee.

When the ghee is hot put in sliced onions (the “second” piaza).

Please Note:

The First “Piaza” has Round “Onions Rings” 

The Second “Piaza” has “Sliced Onions”

Fry the sliced onions till crisp brown.

Add finely chopped ginger and garlicbay leaf, slit green chilliescardamomscinnamonclovespeppercorns – and fry for some time till the spices release their flavour.

Then – add an adequate amount of chopped tomatoes.

Stir the gravy gently and fry on slow fire.

When the ghee separates from the gravy – the “Second Piaza” is ready.

DO PIAZA (Adding the First Piaza to the Second Piaza)

When the ghee separates from the gravy – add the “First Piaza” which you have already cooked to the “Second Piaza”.

Yes – add the succulent cooked chicken [cooked in curd and onion rings] from the first pot (“First Piaza”) to the hot gravy simmering in the second pot (“Second Piaza”)

Increase the flame.

Stir fry – till well browned – and the gravy becomes nice and thick.

I do not like to add garam masala, turmeric, red chilli powder, or any other spice powders – but if you like it – go ahead.

Add salt to taste – and give a stir.

I always find it best to taste the gravy – and add the minimal amount of salt as necessary almost at the end of the cooking process.

When the gravy is nicely browned and ready – garnish with fresh green coriander – and shut the flame.

Remember:

DO NOT ADD WATER AT ANY STAGE OF THE COOKING

If you add water – you will ruin the dish.

“Do Piaza” cooks in its own juices – both during the First “Piaza” – and Second “Piaza”.

EATING THE “DO PIAZA”

Place the “Do Piaza” in a serving dish – squeeze a lemon – garnish with fresh green chopped coriander – and your Chicken Do Piaza is ready to eat.

But first – let’s “visually” savour the “Do Piaza” in our mind’s eye.

A good “Do Piaza” looks appetizing – nicely browned generous pieces of succulent chicken – in translucent juicy onion rings in scrumptious gravy.

“Do Piaza” smells good too – heavenly mouth-watering aroma wafts towards you – making you smack your lips – and salivate in anticipation of the gastronomic treat that awaits you.

“Do Piaza” tastes marvellous – absolutely delicious.

“Do Piaza” is tasty – but it is not “Spicy Hot” – like most Indian Curries.

A good “Do Piaza” is mild and flavoursome – and the unique sweet zest of onions is discernible.

As you savour your “Do Piaza” – the heavenly medley of flavours and fragrances synergizes inside you – and you feel a sense of supreme satisfaction.

You must eat this dish hot and fresh.

Relish the Chicken “Do Piaza” with hot chapatis, phulkas, naan, roti, kulcha – or even a piece of soft fluffy bun, pav or fresh bread – and you will experience sheer bliss.

Happy Cooking and Happy Eating Chicken “Do Piaza” 

VIKRAM KARVE

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Disclaimer:

All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the story are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

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Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)

Link to my original post in my Blog Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2015/12/simple-indian-cooking-chicken-do-piaza.html

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Revised Version of My Article SIMPLE COOKING – CHICKEN DO PIAZA published in my book APPETITE FOR A STROLL (2008) and posted online in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal Blog on 25 Aug 2010 and Posted by me Vikram Karve at 8/25/2010 05:39:00 PM at url: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2010/08/chicken-do-piaza-simple-recipe-for.html

Recipe also reposted many times on my various blogs including at urls: https://karve.wordpress.com/2017/12/09/how-to-cook-do-piaza-recipe/  http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2015/12/simple-indian-cooking-chicken-do-piaza.html  http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2015/01/how-to-cook-chicken-do-pyaza-easy-recipe.html  https://www.quora.com/profile/Vikram-Karve/Writing-by-VIKRAM-KARVE/Recipe-Chicken-Do-Pyaza  http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2011/12/simple-recipe-for-ultimate-mughlai-dish.html

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