Country Captain Chicken Recipe

This recipe calls for a whole chicken, but you can save some prep time and buy precut parts instead. For the tastiest dish of Country Captain, choose bone-in, skin-on chicken, which is much more flavorful than the pricier boneless, skinless pieces. To ensure a golden-brown skin, don't overcrowd the pan or move the pieces around too much. Maintain the freshness of your spices with this simple tip: sprinkling directly from the jar over the steaming hot pot allows moisture into the spice jar. Instead, measure what you need into a small bowl and then add it to the recipe.

Country Captain
Photo: Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling; Audrey Davis; Food styling: Emily Nabors Hall
Active Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 10 mins
4 to 6 serves


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 (3 1/3- to 4-lb.) whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt, divided

  • 1 medium-size yellow onion, chopped (2 cups)

  • 1 small green bell pepper, chopped (1 cup)

  • 2 medium garlic cloves, chopped (2 tsp.)

  • 2 tablespoons curry powder

  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 (28-oz.) can whole peeled tomatoes, undrained

  • 1/2 cup dried currants or raisins, plus more for garnish (optional)

  • 3 cups hot cooked rice (preferably Carolina Gold)

  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

  • 2 bacon slices, cooked crisp and chopped (optional)

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves (optional)

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (optional)

  • 1/2 cup apple chutney (optional)


  1. Heat a large Dutch oven or deep skillet over medium-high; add oil and butter. Sprinkle chicken evenly with 1 1/2 teaspoons of the salt.

  2. Add half of the chicken, skin side down, to Dutch oven. Cook until skin is golden brown, about 8 minutes. Turn with tongs; cook until browned on other side, about 4 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate. Repeat process with remaining chicken.

  3. Reserve 2 teaspoons drippings in Dutch oven. Add onion and bell pepper. Cook over medium-high, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, curry powder, black pepper, and remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomatoes and currants, stirring well to break up tomatoes.

  4. Return chicken to Dutch oven. Reduce heat to low. Cook, covered, until a thermometer inserted in thickest portion of chicken registers 165°F, about 25 minutes.

  5. Transfer chicken to a plate. Bring sauce in Dutch oven to a simmer over medium-high. Simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened, 6 to 7 minutes.

  6. Serve chicken and sauce over hot rice, passing around any extra sauce at the table. Sprinkle evenly with almonds, currants, coconut, bacon, thyme, and/or parsley. Serve with chutney, if desired.

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