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Butter Chicken is the essential taste of India

Every cuisine has a dish that they are famous for. Think Italy and it’s spaghetti and meatballs; for Thailand it’s Pad Thai; southern it is fried chicken. When you think of Indian cuisine one of the most popular dishes would have to be Butter Chicken.  As with each of the dishes that we have mentioned there are many versions of these recipes, depending on who is making it and what region it is from. Most recipes for butter chicken will involve marinating the chicken in yogurt and spices, ginger and garlic. We stay true to that philosophy, as the yogurt acts as a tenderizer for the chicken. You can marinate it overnight, but have also had great results with a quick 30-minute marinate.

You can find pre-mixed Garam Masala spice mixes in most bulk stores and grocery stores. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, feel free to send us an email and we’d love to send you ours! Garam Masala is a mild, warm blend of spices. If you like your Indian spicier, add some cayenne pepper, for instance.

Traditionally the chicken was cooked in a tandoor oven; we have adapted the recipe to create a quick and easy meal in one pot, so use your favourite heavy-lidded pot.
In a food processor blend the ginger and garlic together to form a paste, separately finely chop the almonds in the food processor;
Combine the garlic mixture, the almonds, yogurt, chili, cloves, cinnamon, garam masala, cardamom pods and salt;
Marinate chicken in yogurt mixture for an hour, or overnight, in fridge;
Meanwhile, melt butter in Dutch oven or brazier, add onion and continue to cook until caramelized. Add tomatoes and cook for 3-5 minutes. (this concentrates the tomato flavours);
Add chicken yogurt mixture. Cook, covered, over medium-low heat  for 30-45 minutes until cooked through and flavours come together. Add water during cooking process if necessary;
Turn heat off and stir in cream, if using; sprinkle with cilantro just before serving.

Butter Chicken
(Serves 6)

  • 2-1/2 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs,      cut into large pieces
  • 1/2- inch piece of ginger, roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup blanched almonds
  • 1 cup thick plain yogurt
  • 1/2-3/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp garam masala
  • 6 cardamom pods, lightly crushed
  • 1-1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 1 medium onion, julienned
  • 1-1/2 cup chopped canned tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup water (more if needed)
  • 1/2 cup 35% cream (optional)
  • 6 tbsp finely chopped cilantro leave

 

A little more local for your inbox.

Seven days. One newsletter. Local reporting about people and places you
won't find anywhere else. Stay caught up with The Observer This Week.

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