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Diwali Food

Sizzle your Diwali spread with kebab recipes from MasterChef contestant Sima Ahmed

The MasterChef India S8 contestant shares recipes and tips for great kebabs you can make at home for your Diwali party

Jaismita Alexander | Published 10.11.23, 06:01 PM

The #AwadhWinningChef dishes out some expert tips and recipes for succulent kebabs for Diwali

This Diwali, treat your friends and family to a special meal with the juiciest and tender kebabs. Be it a taash party or a lazy adda session at home, these kebabs are going to be the showstopper. Back from MasterChef India Season 8, which is currently streaming on SonyLiv, Kolkata’s #AwadhWinningChef Sima Ahmed is creating magic in her cloud kitchen.

Sima Ahmed in action on MasterChef India Season 8

Sima Ahmed in action on MasterChef India Season 8

Ahead of the festive season, the owner of cloud kitchen Sima’s Kitchen Secrets, dishes out two kebab recipes and a few tips for My Kolkata readers.


Boti Murgh Kebab

Soft, juicy and easy to make, these boti kebabs are neither very spicy nor complicated. All you need are some basic spices and good boneless chicken from the leg portion. Talking about the recipe, Sima said, “People think kebabs are complicated and take a lot of time. But these are simple and get done in no time! Sometimes when we want to eat something tasty yet very light, I make these kebabs. My children absolutely love them.”


  • Boneless chicken from thigh: 500gm
  • Onion paste: 2 tbsp
  • Ginger paste: ½ tsp
  • Garlic paste: ⅓ tsp
  • Green chilli paste: ¼ tsp
  • Cashew paste: 1 tbsp
  • Curd: 3 tbsp
  • Cumin powder: ½ tsp
  • Saffron: 15 threads
  • Lemon: ½
  • Pomegranate juice: ½ cup
  • Green papaya paste: 1 tbsp
  • Cooking oil: 2 tbsp
  • Butter: 2 tbsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Charcoal: 1 piece


  • In a bowl, mix together all the spices and curd with the ginger-garlic, chilli, cashew, and papaya pastes as well as cooking oil
  • Now squeeze in half a lemon and half cup of pomegranate juice and give it all a good mix
  • In a small bowl or a cup, take some lukewarm milk and soak the 15 saffron threads until they release colour. Then stir in the saffron milk to the mixture
  • Finally add the chicken pieces and gently coat every piece in the masala. Cover and keep in marinade for at least an hour
  • Skewer the chicken pieces and keep in place with the help of a thread, and then grill on a high flame. You can place the skewers on a rack to cook them
  • Brush a little butter on the kebabs as they cook
  • Once the chicken starts to change colour to brownish, take them off the flame and place all the cooked kebabs in a large utensil
  • Take a small piece of charcoal and heat it over high flame until it is red/orange, and place it in a small steel bowl
  • Place the bowl in the utensil with the kebabs and add a dollop of butter on the hot charcoal. Close the lid immediately and leave for 10-15 minutes. This is dhungar that brings some smokiness to the kebabs
  • After 10-15 minutes, open the lid and serve the kebabs with your favourite chutney and salads

Kachcha Keema Kebab

These melt-in-the-mouth mutton kebabs are perfect for a festive evening and can be a delish prelude to the lavish dinner. Sharing the recipe, the home chef said, “I make food from our gharana and this is also one of my favourites. If you can follow the recipe correctly, you will have the softest and juiciest kebabs to relish.”


  • Minced mutton: 200 gm
  • Mutton fat: 25 gm
  • Ginger paste: 1 tsp
  • Garlic paste: 1/2 tsp
  • Red chilli powder: 1/4 tsp
  • Green chilli: 1 piece
  • Onion: 1 medium sized
  • Fresh green coriander leaves: 1 fistful
  • Whole cumin seeds: 1/2 tsp
  • Whole coriander seeds: 1/2 tsp
  • Black cardamom: 1 piece
  • Black peppercorn: 1/2 tsp
  • Cinnamon stick: 1/2 inch
  • Pomegranate seeds: 1 tsp
  • Mint powder: 1 tsp
  • Chickpea flour (besan): 2 tbsp
  • Salt: 1 tsp
  • Ghee or mustard oil: 100 ml


  • In a dry pan or a wok, slightly roast the whole spices — coriander seeds, cumin seeds, black peppercorn, black cardamom, cinnamon stick, pomegranate seeds, for half a minute and leave them aside to cool
  • With the help of a mortar and pestle or grinder, make a powder of the dry-roasted spices
  • Chop the onion, green chilli and coriander leaves finely and keep aside
  • Take the minced mutton in a bowl and one by one add the spice powder, ginger garlic paste, chopped onion, coriander and chillies and mix well
  • Now add the mutton fat, red chilli powder, mint powder, chickpea flour and salt and mix well for at least two minutes. Rest the mix for an hour
  • After an hour, grease your hands with oil and take small portions of the meat and shape them into small discs
  • Heat a pan and add ghee or mustard oil for frying
  • Keeping the flame on low to medium, fry the kebabs till they turn golden brown. Remove them from the pan and place on a tissue paper to drain excess oil
  • Serve with your favourite chutneys and salads

Sima Ahmed’s tips for the perfect kebabs

  • For mutton kebabs, use the meat of the back leg of the goat or lamb, or the raan portion
  • For minced mutton kebabs, use at least 200gm of suet — the hard fat around the loins and kidneys — for every 500gm of mince
  • For every kebab preparation, allow the spices to infuse flavours and oils in the meat for one hour. This makes the kebabs soft and flavourful
  • For beef kebabs, sirloin and tenderloin cuts of the meat are the best
  • If you want to make the kebabs juicy, put the meat on a high flame first and then low flame for slow cooking. Cooking on a high flame first locks the moisture and retains tenderness
  • If you feel the meat is too dry and stiff, add some curd and papaya juice during marination
Last updated on 10.11.23, 06:02 PM

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