Margarita's International Recipes


Mulligatawny Soup

Mulligatawny Soup is the best known Anglo-Indian dish in this country. Meaning "chilli water" in Tamil, it was probably invented by an Indian chef to suit his English masters' fondness for soup, a dish not commonly eaten by Indians. Of course it evolved throughout the years and even know you can find dozens if not hundreds of different recipes. The one below is a combination of a couple. You can also make the soup vegetarian by skipping the chicken, or use another type of meat. You can use cream instead of coconut milk, and add other ingredients such as rice, curry leaves, tamarind concentrate and celery. I used mansoor dhal, which are gorgeous, tiny orange-red lentils, but I'm sure you can use other lentils as well.

Many versions of mulligatawny call for the soup to be put the blender or food processor. I like my soup chunky so I didn't do this, if you do, blend it before you add the coconut milk, lemon juice and cilantro.

This version turned out pretty well. It was probably not as spicy as I would have liked it, but it was very satisfying and we gobbled up the leftovers the next day.

Mulligatawny Soup

Mulligatawny Soup


  • 1 1/2 lbs chicken tighs
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon ghee
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1" piece fresh ginger, chopped
  • 2 jalapeno chilies, seeded and chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 apple - peeled, cored, and chopped
  • 1 large potato, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 2 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 4 cardamom pods, bruised
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro


    In a large pot, simmer the chicken, covered, in 4 cups of water until tender, about 30 minutes. Remove from the pot and reserve the water. Let the chicken cool and then debone and chop into large chunks. Set aside.

    Heat the ghee in a large pan and add the onion, garlic, ginger and chilies. Sautee until the onion is tender. Take off the heat and add this mixture to the water from the chicken.

    Add the remaining 2 cups of water to the pot and then add the carrot, apple, potato, lentils, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, cumin, turmeric and cardamon pods. Simmer covered until the vegetables are tender, around 15 minutes.

    Add the lemon juice, coconut milk and cilantro, stir until heated through and serve.

    Adapted from The Frugal Gourmet and Michelle Chen's recipe at

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