Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Butter chicken.

Did you know that butter chicken has no butter in it? The nomenclature for this dish comes from the butter like consistency of the sauce. The richness of the sauce is due to the presence of heavy cream in it. This again is one of my husband's favorites. He relishes it every time I make it!

Servings: 4


Boneless chicken breasts : 2 lbs cut into small- medium pieces

For marination:

Ginger-garlic paste 1 tbsp
Kashmiri chilli pwd: 1 tsp
Turmeric: 1 tsp
Coriander pwd: 1 tsp
Garam masala: 1 tsp
Yogurt: 1/2 cup
Lemon juice from 1/2 lemon
Salt : 1 tsp
Kasoori methi: 1 tbsp

For the sauce:

Oil: 2tbsp
Onions: 2 medium chopped
Ginger-garlic paste: 1 tbsp
Tomato paste : 1 can
Green chillies: 4 medium
Cashews: 6-8 ( optional)
Haldi( turmeric powder):1tsp
Coriander powder: 1tbsp
Cumin powder: 1tsp
Garam masala powder: 1 tsp
Chilli powder: 1/2 tsp
Kasoori methi ( dried fenugreek leaves): 1 tsp
Heavy cream: 1/2 cup
Cilantro leaves: 1 tbsp chopped fine
Sugar:1/2 tsp
Salt: to taste


The chicken:

Clean the chicken pieces and marinate it with all the ingredients under 'for marination'. Mix well and keep it in the fridge for at least 2 hours. Line a baking tray with foil, place the chicken pieces on it in single layer and bake for 30mins at 350 degrees in the oven turning once in between.Alternatively, you can also cook the chicken until done,on the grill.

 The sauce:

Soak the cashew nuts in water for at least 2 hours.Then grind it to a paste with green chillies.

In a sauté pan/ wok heat 1/2 tbsp oil and sauté chopped onion until it begins to change color. Switch off the flame and let it cool. Once cooled, put it in a blender and make onion paste.

Heat the wok/ sauté pan again, add remaining oil. Keep the flame on low.Add ginger-garlic paste and sauté it for 1minute. Now add the onion paste to it and sauté until it  turns a little golden brown. Add the tomato paste and sauté until it begins to leave oil. Now add the haldi powder, coraiander and cumin powders and sauté for 30 seconds. Add red chilli powder and garam masala and sauté for another 20 seconds. Now add the cashew-green chilli mixture and mix well. Add 1/2 cup water to thin the sauce. Let it simmer. Add Kasoori methi, salt and pinch of sugar and mix well.

Putting it together:
To the above sauce, add the baked/ grilled chicken with the juices left during baking. Add the 1/2 cup heavy cream, let it simmer for 2 mins.

Garnish with cilantro leaves.

Serve hot with plain rice/ jeera/ rice/ peas-carrot pulao or just with some kind of roti/naan/bread.

Cooking made easy:

Sauce can be made ahead of time and kept in the fridge. Marinated chicken can be kept in the freezer. When needed, bake/grill the chicken and just heat the sauce and mix it in.

Tip for healthy living:

Every meal should be a balanced meal with half of the plate being fruits and vegetables, while the other half is proteins and carbohydrates. This will ensure that you get all the required daily nutrients and will have no need to take dietary supplements.
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Food for thought:

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.(Bernard M. Baruch)