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Makai Paka/ Corn Coconut Curry is an easy to prepare, tasty and creamy Kenyan style curry in which corn is cooked using coconut milk. Usually, makai paka is enjoyed with mahamri, chappati or rice. Makai is the Kiswahili word for corn.
5 from 18 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Course curry, Main Course, Main Meal
Cuisine Swahili
Servings 3 people


  • cup sweet corn cooked
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 6 peppercorns
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 inch cinnamon stick
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 3 tbsp cashew nut powder
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • ½ tsp green chilli paste or 1-2 whole ones
  • 1 tsp ginger paste
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • ¾ - 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper powder
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 can coconut milk 400ml
  • ¼ cup water
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh coriander


  • Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. When it is hot, add peppercorns, cloves and cinnamon.
  • Add cumin seeds.
  • Add chopped onion and stir fry till the it is cooked and soft.
  • Add garlic paste. Stir fry for a few seconds.
  • Add chilli and ginger pastes and stir fry for a few seconds.
  • Add the cashew nut powder and mix.
  • Add turmeric powder, salt and corn. Mix well.
  • Add coconut milk. Add about ¼ cup water if you want a thinner curry.
  • Simmer makai paka for 5 minutes over low heat.
  • Add chopped coriander and pepper powder. Mix and serve with mahamri, rice or chappati.


  • If you want a less liquidy curry, don't add water.
  • I use canned corn which gives about 1¼ cups of corn.
  • Don't allow the curry to boil on high heat as it may separate the fat from the coconut milk.
  • If you don't have cashew nut powder, replace it with any nut powder or chickpea flour. If you use chickpea flour, roast it a bit before adding the corn.
  • Can be prepared ahead and to serve, just warm it up.
  • The curry becomes a bit thick on cooling, so add water accordingly.
Keyword Kenyan Style Corn Coconut Curry, makai paka recipe