Thursday, April 15, 2010

Grilled Indian Butter Chicken


I was searching around the internets this week, looking for some grilled chicken ideas. I get bored of doing the same old thing, but in the summer, I love grilled chicken. When I saw the title of this recipe, I knew I would love it! Indian spices? Butter?
I was worried my kids wouldn't eat it, so I cut back on the hot spices a bit. They loved it! Bozo #2 said it was his favorite chicken ever...but, he says that a lot, so who knows.
It was a bit time consuming, but it needs to marinate a long time. So, you can prepare it when you have time & have it ready to grill on a busy weeknight.

Begin by making the marinade. Add 1 cup of chopped onion to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Finely chop 3 tablespoons of garlic.

Finely chop 2 tablespoons of fresh, peeled ginger.

Coarsely chop 1 Thai green chile, or a jalapeno. Leave in the seeds & ribs for more heat. Measure out 1 teaspoon of distilled white vinegar & 1 1/4 teaspoons of kosher salt.

Add everything to the onions,

and blend until {mostly} smooth.
Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl & whisk in a 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt, 1 1/2 tablespoons of ground coriander, 1 tablespoon canola oil, 1 teaspoon ground turmeric & a 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper {depending on how much heat you want}.

Next, you will need 1-3 pound chicken, that has been quartered with the backbone & skin removed. It's less time consuming to just have a butcher do this for you...or buy a quartered chicken & remove the skin yourself.
Add the chicken pieces & toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap, or transfer to a resealable container & marinate for at least 16 hours {or up to 3 days}. Let the chicken stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before grilling.

When you are ready to grill the chicken, begin making the ghee {or it can be made ahead of time & reheated}. You can also purchase ghee {or clarified butter} at most gourmet grocery stores.
To make your own, heat 1 stick of unsalted butter over moderate heat until gently boiling. Reduce the heat to very low & cook the butter until a very thin crust begins to form on the surface & milky white solids fall to the bottom of the pan {about 8 minutes}.
Continue to cook the butter, watching to avoid burning, until the solids at the bottom turn light brown & the butter has a nutty fragrance {about 6-8 minutes more}. Remove the pan from the heat & let it stand for 1 minute. Pour the butter through a double layer of moistened heavy duty paper towels into a bowl, or measuring cup. Discard the solids.
You can click here for great step by step instructions on how to make Ghee.

Heat a gas, or charcoal grill & lightly oil the grill racks. Put the chicken, still heavily coated in marinade, on the rack, over indirect heat {as much as possible}. Drizzle the chicken with about a tablespoon of the ghee. Cook over medium high heat, turning over & drizzling with ghee every 5 minutes, covering the grill between turns, until the chicken is cooked through {about 30-45 minutes}.
Note: I was a bit worried about this dish as I was cooking it. The marinade looked a bit weird. Also, removing the skin? Wouldn't that dry the chicken out? But, I was so glad I tried it! So good! The marinade had amazing flavor & I like the fact that it had direct contact with the chicken, rather than just the skin.

Grilled Indian Butter Chicken

Adapted from Gourmet magazine, May 2006
Serves 4

1 cup chopped onion
3 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh ginger {peeled}
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
1 small fresh, green Thai or jalepeno chile, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 1/2 tablespoons ground coriander
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspooon ground turmeric
1/4-1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 {3 pound} chicken, quartered, backbone & skin removed
1 stick unsalted butter

Marinate Chicken:
Add the onion, garlic, ginger, salt, chile & vinegar to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Blend until smooth. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl & whisk in the yogurt, coriander, oil, turmeric & cayenne pepper. Add the chicken pieces & toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap, or transfer to a resealable container & marinate for at least 16 hours {or up to 3 days}. Let the chicken stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before grilling.

To Make the Ghee:
Bring the butter to a gentle boil in a small saucepan. Reduce the heat to very low & cook the butter until a very thin crust begins to form on the surface & milky white solids fall to the bottom of the pan {about 8 minutes}. Continue to cook the butter, watching to avoid burning, until the solids at the bottom turn light brown & the butter has a nutty fragrance {about 6-8 minutes more}.
Remove the pan from the heat & let it stand for 1 minute. Pour through a double layer of moistened heavy duty paper towels into a bowl, or measuring cup. Discard the solids.

To Grill the Chicken:
Heat a gas, or charcoal grill & lightly oil the grill racks. Put the chicken, still heavily coated in marinade, on the rack, over indirect heat {as much as possible}. Drizzle the chicken with about a tablespoon of the ghee. Cook over medium high heat, turning over & drizzling with ghee every 5 minutes, covering the grill between turns, until the chicken is cooked through {about 30-45 minutes}.

Click here for the printable recipe.

6 comments:

laurie said...

Looks really good! Im going to have to make this!!

Janice said...

mmmm I can almost taste that, yum!

Lynn said...

Wow -- that looks great. I'll definitely be giving it a try!

Memória said...

Your chicken looks fantastic!! It is missing one of the vital ingredients, though - kasuri methi or fenugreek leaves!! They add a fragrant flavor and taste to the dish as well. Nevertheless, I applaud your effort. The process photos look great. I love that you made your own ghee and ginger/garlic paste!

kate said...

Thanks everyone!

Memória~This was my first time making butter chicken. The recipe I followed did not have fenugreek leaves in it.
But, I saw elsewhere on the internet that it was an important element. I love fenugreek, so I'm sure I would love the addition.
Do you know where I would find some?

Thanks!

Ashmi said...

Kate - I think your best bet would be to get fenugreek leaves from an Indian store. I've tried looking for them at other places (like Whole Foods) but have never had luck. Good luck!

By the way...making this on Sunday! Can't wait!

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