Ginger butter chicken
Prep time 1 hour 20 minutes + overnight marinating time
Cook time 45 minutes
1kg boneless chicken, skin removed and chopped into chunks
juice from 1 lime
salt, to taste
1 tsp red chilli powder > 5 tbsp vegetable or sunflower oil
8-10 black peppercorns
1-inch stick cinnamon
2 bay leaves
2 cardamoms, crushed
1 cup full-fat yogurt, strained
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
¼ tsp turmeric
2 onions, chopped
1 tsp ginger paste
2 tsp garlic paste
400g chopped tomatoes, blended to a smooth paste in a food processor
½ litre chicken stock
2 tbsp kasuri methi (dried fenugreek vleaves)
3 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
20g coriander leaves
• In a large bowl, mix the chicken chunks with lime juice, salt and red chilli powder. Cover and leave to marinate overnight in the fridge.
• Pan-sear the chicken over high heat in 2 tbsp oil till golden brown. In a separate pan over medium heat, lightly toast the: cloves, peppercorns, cinnamon, bay leaves, almonds and cardamoms till fragrant, about 5 to 10 minutes. Grind in a food processor to a coarse powder.
• Mix with the strained yogurt, coriander powder, cumin and turmeric. Add to the seared chicken and let sit for 1 hour.
• In a deep heavy-bottomed pan with remaining oil, fry the onions till they turn a pale golden brown, then add the ginger and garlic pastes. Fry until fragrant, about 3 to 4 minutes.
• Strain the chicken from the yogurt mixture and add to the pan. Fry until the meat is cooked, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, chicken stock, kasuri methi and leftover yogurt mixture. Cook till chicken is tender and the gravy has reduced to half its original volume, about 20-30 minutes.
• Melt the ghee in a separate sauce pan and drizzle over the chicken. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with steamed rice or naan.
Excerpt from the November 2013 issue of epicure.