First combine the paste ingredients to make a smooth mixture. Make a few deep gashes on the chicken pieces and rub the paste over them. Leave to marinate for 1 hour.
Heat the mustard oil in a saucepan over moderate heat. Add the bay leaves and cardamom seeds, stir, then add the onion and fry until light brown. Then add the remaining spices, stir well and add the chicken pieces. Continue to cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes. Add the salt, garlic, ginger and tomatoes and cook for a further 10 minutes, still stirring.
When the fat starts separating, add water. Stir once or twice. Cover with a tightly fitting lid, lower the heat and leave to simmer for about 25 minutes until the chicken is tender. Serve hot.