Traditional Mauritian Food – Mauritian Curry Recipe

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On our relaxing vacation in Mauritius, we were seeking out the best local food, and we learned that the food in Mauritius is very Indian based, with curries and dhal and rice. We love the curries, the spices, the tropical fruits, all of it. We wanted to bring a recipe home to add to our repertoire. Luckily our hotel, the incredible beach side Recif Attitude, was offering this cooking lesson for free. We couldn’t wait to learn how to make traditional Mauritian chicken curry, then gobble it up for lunch before another swim.

Jump directly to the Mauritian Curry recipe.

Mauritian food: Tasting Dish of Mauritian/Indian cuisine

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Grown in Mauritius: A basket of peppers for sale

Mauritian Food

It’s all about the spice! Walking through the market in Port Louis, we noticed many spice vendors and piles of chiles. We also know that vanilla is grown on the island along with sugar cane, pineapples, and coconuts. It all sounds very tropical and delicious, doesn’t it? We couldn’t wait to try it. 

Seafood curry, a Mauritian dish staple

Typical Mauritian Dishes: 

  • Dholl Puri
  • Mine Frites
  • Seafood
  • Curries
  • Biryani

Dholl puri vendor making one for a worker in Port Louis Central Market

Dholl Puri

A Mauritian snack food, derived from paratha in India. A flatbread spread with yellow beans and the Mauritian chili sauce, called mazavaroo. You can usually find them in markets and town squares. This stall is located in the Port Louis Central Market. The dholl puri costs about 80 US cents, so it’s cheap and tasty.

Mauritian food: Mine frites, a Chinese derivative of fried noodles.

Mine Frites

 Living in central Europe, I expected this to be some type of potatoes or French fries. Boy, was I wrong. Derived from the Chinese immigrants, it’s a fried noodle with cabbage, onion, and in this case chicken. This dish can be found all over the island, but the best one we found was near Riambel Public Beach in the south.

Seafood

It stands to reason that seafood is a staple of the island. While we were there, we got our fill of fish, mussels, and shrimp. It was always on the spicy side, but we loved every bite.

Chicken curry and biryani

Biryani

Also derived from India, we were served biryani mostly as a side dish in many of the restaurants we tried. Who doesn’t love a spicy rice?

vanilla and almond alouda

Alouda

A milky drink with tapioca balls, this became our favorite snack and drink of the trip. Various flavors are on offer. We tried almond, strawberry, and my favorite vanilla. It’s made fresh and served cold, so it’s welcome on a hot Mauritian day. We found stands all over the island, and I don’t think we passed even one without stopping. It’s amazing, almost addictive.

Mauritius Food Products:

  • cane sugar and rum
  • vanilla
  • pineapples
  • coconuts

Mauritius foods: vanilla, which is infused in these creme brulee

Vanilla

As vanilla is grown on the island, we found a lot of offerings that featured this prized product. Pictured above is a crème brulée, and we’ve also tried vanilla alouda and vanilla tea. 

Sign of Rhumerie de Chamarel - Mauritian rum

Mauritian Rum

With plenty of sugar cane grown all over the island, rum is a major product. We visited the Rhumerie de Chamarel just to taste their rum varieties. I never knew there were so many. My favorite was the cinnamon rum, which really accentuated that tropical, spice island feel; it was truly Mauritian.

Mauritius food: Victoria pineapples

Pineapples

A smaller and sweeter variety of pineapple found in most parts of the world, the Victoria, or Queen, pineapples are found for sale all over the island. We came upon this pile in the charming Mahebourg Central Market. How many pineapples can you eat while you are on a tropical island vacation? My experience? A lot!

Mauritian food: Fresh fruit stand in Port Louis.

Coconuts

Palm trees and beaches…that means coconuts. Another ubiquitous fruit, it will refresh you on the hottest of days. I loved this fresh fruit stand we found right on the Port Louis boardwalk. 

Cooking in a wok, traditional Mauritian chicken curry

Mauritian Chicken Curry

Mauritian curries, although a direct descendent from India, have their own unique taste. We learned that there was more garlic and maybe less tomatoes in a Mauritian curry. 

Ingredients, mise en place, for Mauritian curry

We never pass up an opportunity for a cooking lesson, so we signed up immediately with the front desk for the Mauritian curry lesson. It was taught by Kavita, who we had gotten to know from her amazing Creole omelettes we ordered each morning. The omelettes again used the Mauritian yumminess called mazavaroo, making them just spicy enough to wake us up.

Jim stirring the Mauritian curry

Kavita’s lesson moved quickly. I don’t think we were there more than 30 minutes. She and her staff had already done the mise en place with all of the ingredients as well as setting up the woks and burners, so all we had to do is dump the ingredients into the woks at the right time, stir, and eat!

Our finished dish: Traditional Mauritian Chicken Curry

Mauritian Curry (Chicken)
Yield: 4 servings

Mauritian Curry (Chicken)

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Mauritian curries, although a direct descendent from India, have their own unique taste. For instance, there is typically more garlic and ginger and less tomatoes in a Mauritian curry. 

Ingredients

  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast cut in 1 inch cubes
  • 1 cup red onion, diced
  • 1 cup tomato, diced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger root, minced
  • 8 or 9 small curry leaves
  • 4 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1 tablespoon turmeric
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 cup water

Instructions

  1. Add the cooking oil to the wok and bring up the temperature on a medium high heat.
  2. Add the diced onion and the bay leaf, stir frying until the onion is transparent and the leafs are soft.
  3. Next add the minced ginger and garlic and stir fry into the onion and curry leaf mixture.
  4. Add the cubed chicken and continue stir frying on medium high heat until the chicken is lightly browned.
  5. Next add the curry powder and turmeric and mix in until the chicken is evenly coated with the curry mixture.
  6. Toss in the chopped tomatoes, bring down the heat to medium and cook until the tomatoes are soft (about 5 minutes).
  7. Add some water, one tablespoon at a time, to start building up the sauce (about 5 or 6 tablespoons).
  8. Season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  9. Continue simmering for about 15 minutes to cook the chicken all the way through. Add more water as needed to keep the sauce from getting too thick.
  10. Serve over rice or with naan.
Check out the prices for hotels like Recif Attitude here…

Save This Delicious Traditional Mauritian Chicken Curry Recipe For Later!

Do you love curry? Here is a great recipe from the small, but gorgeous country of Mauritius. Click here for more! #Mauritius #Chickencurry #recipe

 

 

36 thoughts on “Traditional Mauritian Food – Mauritian Curry Recipe

  1. travellingdany says:

    I must admit that while I participated to several show cooking in Italy, I never had a cooking lesson while travelling. I bucketlisted this experience!

    • Jim Vail says:

      Definitely do it! There’s something about being in a kitchen that really gets people talking. You learn so much more than just how to cook a certain dish.

  2. Ruth says:

    I have all these ingredients at home (except the curry leaves). It will be nice to prepare it (my husband will be very pleased). I have done Indian curries before and they have ended up very good. I like a lot the music in the video.

    • Jim Vail says:

      I was surprised top find that we had most of the ingredients at home as well. If you have an Indian market or store nearby you should be able to find the curry leaves there, but you can make it with out them.

  3. Jessica @ Independent Travel Cats says:

    Looks delicious! Laurence’s father grew up in the Seychelles and his brother lives in Mauritius – I haven’t been to either yet (although tenative plans are in the works) but food like this makes me want to go even more 😉

  4. The Roaming Renegades.com says:

    This curry sounds delicious! We also love cooking classes and recently took one in Myanmar and was fortunate that our hotel also offered that service! We will definitely have to try out this recipe soon!

  5. adriacareyperez says:

    That looks sooo yummy! I’ll have to try this to expand my curry repertoire.

  6. Livi Bee says:

    I have never thought to take a cooking class while visiting another country, but I love the idea! This is something I’m going to have to look into. And I love curry chicken!! I’ll be trying this recipe!!

  7. Wherejogoes says:

    I loved the Mauritian curries when we visited Mauritius but haven’t tried cooking any at home. Thanks for sharing the recipe! #Wkendtravelinspiration

  8. travelsewhere says:

    I’m a big fan of Indian cuisine so it just sounds like yet another reason to visit Mauritius, as if I need more! Yum! #wkendtravelinspiration

  9. budgettraveltalk says:

    Wow, I love eating and cooking curries. This one is so simple I’ve saved it to my Pinterest. We did a cooking lesson in Cambodia in a local’s house, but it was 3 courses and not as easy as this one.

    • Corinne Vail says:

      Jan, I took one in Thailand and we spent so much time grinding the curry in the mortar and pestle…this time it was already powder. Much faster.

  10. ourfamilytraveladventures says:

    I love curry and this one looks delicious! I’m looking forward to trying it.

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