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Special Balti

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If you like a good balti, you’ve got to try this special balti!

You might ask yourself what makes a special balti so special.

Well, these are usually the most expensive baltis on the menu and can vary from restaurant to restaurant.

I have many special balti recipes as they usually include a good combination of ingredients.

I hope you give this special balti a try but feel free to adjust the ingredients as you feel fit.

So good with naans. Try this special balti recipe!

Working ahead…

To make a special balti really memorable, you are going to have to do some forward planning.

There’s no way around that. Just look at all the ingredients. We’ve got tandoori lamb, tandoori chicken, prawns, keema… All this in one curry.

Special baltis aren’t for everyone but real balti fans do tend to love them. I usually make my special baltis when I’m also making a few other curries.

That or I make them to use up what I have left over from my last curry feast.

How do I substitute other ingredients?

That’s all down to you and what you think would be good in it. Paneer, chickpeas, grilled venison… The idea behind it is to include a large combination of ingredients that you really like.

You might think that including so many different ingredients in one special balti would be a bit much. It isn’t. It just seems to work somehow.

The base sauce

Special balti curries, just like other baltis and normal curry house curries. They are prepared with a base sauce. One of my base sauce recipes in right here.


You could cheat and cook it the more authentic way but personally I think you need to use the base sauce. It makes the texture and flavour just like it should be.

That said, you might like to try my chicken balti without base sauce. It can be done.

The tandoori meats

Tandoori meat plays a big roll in delicious baltis.

You could try my tandoori chicken recipe here and my tandoori lamb recipe here. In this case I added the prawns raw though tandoori prawns would be amazing in this recipe too.

The smoky charred flavour of the tandoori meat is one of the things that makes an authentic special balti the dish it is.

The balti bowl…

One of the things that makes a balti a balti is the stainless steel pan or balti bowl is it cooked in.

These can be amazing as the curry is served in the same pan it is cooked in. Sizzling hot and delicious.

Most restaurants these days cook their baltis in a normal frying pan and then just serve it in an ornamental balti dish. You can do that too.

But if you have a Balti pan, use it. You will be much happier with the end curry.

If you like this special balti recipe, you might like to try some of these curry recipes too…

Korma sauce
Pasanda sauce
Chasni sauce
Ceylon sauce
Chilli garlic sauce
Dhansak sauce
Pathia sauce
Jalfrezi sauce
Keema sauce
Methi sauce
Saag sauce
Madras sauce
Vindaloo sauce
Phaal sauce

Special Balti

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Yield: 6

Mix It Up Special Balti

Special Balti
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 3 tbsp rapeseed (canola) oil

  • 1⁄2 onion, finely chopped

  • 1 large tomato, diced

  • 2 green chillies, finely chopped
  • 200g (7oz) pre-cooked lamb keema
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric

  • 1 tsp mixed powder
  • 1 tsp chilli powder (optional)
  • 150ml (generous 1⁄2 cup) base curry sauce
  • 3 pieces of tandoori chicken tikka
  • 3 pieces of tandoori lamb tikka
  • 100ml (31⁄2 fl oz) coconut milk
  • 2 handfuls of chopped spinach
  • 3 prawns (shrimp), shelled and cleaned

1⁄2 tsp kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
  • Handful of chickpeas (garbanzo beans) (optional)
  • Juice of 1⁄2 lemon
  • Salt to taste


  1. Heat a balti pan or similar pan over a medium–high heat and
    add the oil. When hot, add the onion and fry for about 3 minutes, then stir in the tomato and chillies.
  2. Stir well to combine, then add the pre-cooked keema
    and tomato purée, followed by all the ground spices.
  3. Spoon in about half the base sauce and then the chicken and lamb tikka. Bring to a simmer and add more
    base sauce when it’s looking thirsty.
  4. Now add the coconut milk and spinach. It will look like
    there is a lot in the pan right now, but the spinach cooks down quickly.
  5. When it does, add the prawns and cook for about 2 minutes until they are pink and cooked through. Be sure to top up the curry with some base sauce as needed.
  6. Season with salt. To finish, add the kasoori methi by rubbing the leaves between your fingers into the pan. Add the chickpeas (if using) and squeeze the lemon juice over the top.
  7. Baltis are traditionally eaten with hot naans, but you could also serve this with rice.

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I hope you enjoy this special balti recipe. If you do try it, please leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you.


Friday 18th of January 2019


what do you do with the red peppers?

I added them at the same time as the onions

Dan Toombs

Monday 21st of January 2019

Hi Steve

I'll have to fix that when I get a chance. You did right though.

Thanks, Dan

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