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Butter Chicken: Spiced Perfection

Creamy Buttery Tomato Harmony

By SaurabhKPublished about a month ago 3 min read
Butter Chicken

Introduction

Butter Chicken, also known as Murgh Makhani, is a beloved dish in Indian cuisine, cherished for its rich, creamy, and flavorful profile. This iconic dish combines tender, marinated chicken with a smooth, velvety tomato-based sauce, offering a perfect blend of spices. Originating from North India, Butter Chicken has captured the hearts of food enthusiasts worldwide. Here's an authentic recipe that includes grinding the sauce ingredients for an extra-smooth texture.

The Origins of Butter Chicken

Butter Chicken's roots trace back to the 1950s in Delhi, India. Created by Kundan Lal Gujral, the founder of the famous restaurant Moti Mahal, the dish was born out of a need to utilize leftover tandoori chicken, combined with a rich, buttery tomato sauce. This innovation minimized waste and resulted in one of the most cherished dishes in Indian cuisine.

Ingredients

To prepare authentic Butter Chicken, you will need the following ingredients:

For the Chicken Marinade:

500 grams of boneless chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 cup yogurt

1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon turmeric powder

1 teaspoon red chili powder

1 teaspoon garam masala

Salt to taste

For the Sauce:

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

2 large onions, chopped

2 teaspoons ginger-garlic paste

4 large tomatoes, chopped

1 teaspoon red chili powder

1 teaspoon turmeric powder

1 teaspoon garam masala

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 cup heavy cream

2 tablespoons honey

Salt to taste

Fresh cilantro, chopped (for garnish)

Instructions

Step 1: Marinate the Chicken

In a large bowl, combine yogurt, ginger-garlic paste, lemon juice, turmeric powder, red chili powder, garam masala, and salt.

Add the chicken pieces to the marinade, ensuring they are well-coated. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight for best results.

Step 2: Cook the Chicken

Preheat your grill or oven to medium-high heat.

Thread the marinated chicken pieces onto skewers or place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Grill or bake the chicken for about 10-12 minutes, or until fully cooked and slightly charred. Alternatively, you can cook the chicken in a pan with a little oil until it's done. Set the chicken aside.

Step 3: Prepare the Sauce

In a large pan, heat the butter and vegetable oil over medium heat.

Add the chopped onions and sauté until they turn golden brown.

Add the ginger-garlic paste and cook for another 2 minutes until the raw smell disappears.

Add the chopped tomatoes and cook until the mixture thickens and the oil begins to separate from the tomatoes.

Step 4: Blend the Sauce

Allow the onion, ginger-garlic, and tomato mixture to cool slightly.

Transfer the mixture to a blender and blend until smooth. Be careful while blending hot liquids; let it cool a bit or use a towel to hold the lid.

Step 5: Cook the Blended Sauce

Return the blended sauce to the pan.

Add red chili powder, turmeric powder, garam masala, ground cumin, ground coriander, and salt. Mix well and cook for a few minutes until the spices are well incorporated.

Lower the heat and stir in the heavy cream. Simmer the sauce for about 5-7 minutes, allowing it to thicken and develop a rich flavor.

Add the cooked chicken pieces to the sauce, ensuring they are well-coated. Let the chicken simmer in the sauce for another 10 minutes.

Stir in the honey to balance the flavors and adjust the seasoning if needed.

Step 6: Serve

Garnish the Butter Chicken with freshly chopped cilantro.

Serve hot with naan, roti, or steamed basmati rice.

Tips for the Perfect Butter Chicken

Marination Time: Marinate the chicken for at least 2 hours to allow the flavors to penetrate. Overnight marination yields the best results.

Cooking Method: While grilling or baking the chicken adds a nice char and smoky flavor, cooking it in a pan works well too.

Creaminess: For a lighter version, you can substitute heavy cream with Greek yogurt or cashew cream.

Spice Level: Adjust the amount of red chili powder to suit your taste preferences.

Conclusion

Butter Chicken is a timeless dish that brings together the richness of Indian spices and the comfort of a creamy tomato sauce. Its universal appeal lies in its harmonious balance of flavors and textures. By following this authentic recipe and blending the sauce ingredients, you can recreate the magic of Butter Chicken in your own kitchen and savor a true culinary masterpiece. Enjoy the delightful experience of indulging in this classic dish, whether it's for a special occasion or a comforting weeknight meal.

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About the Creator

SaurabhK

I am a versatile writer passionate about crafting gripping crime fiction and insightful real crime articles. 🕵️‍♂️📖 I also explore culinary delights, uncovering flavorful experiences that celebrate the artistry of chefs. 🍽️🍷

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    SaurabhKWritten by SaurabhK

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