Tandoori chicken is the famous Indian starter that is extremely simple to make yet very rarely it turns up right when cooked at home. As you already know, absence of a tandoor is the first limitation that never gives the dish it’s smoky flavor. Second limitation is the absence of freshly grounded spices as most of us outside India use the ready-mixtures that have artificial flavors. I made this tasty treat at home and it turned out great.
1 Whole Chicken (cleaned – boneless or with bones, as preferred) 1 tbsp coriander powder 1 tsp haldi or turmeric powder 1 tsp garam masala powder 1 tsp salt 1 tsp Chaat masala (use desired mount of mango powder as an alternative) 1 tbsp Kashmiri red chili powder 2-3 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice 5-6 whole mint leaves Natural food red color in desired quantity 2 tbsp of fresh ginger + garlic paste 2 cups of hung yoghurt (pour the regular yoghurt into a muslin cloth, tie a tight knot & keep it aside for 10-15 mins for the excess water to drain)
Step 1 – Gently slit the chicken pieces and rub with 1/2 tsp of Kashmiri chili powder + 1 tbsp of lime juice. Cover and keep it aside for 20 mins.
Step 2 – Make the marinade by combining yoghurt and rest of the ingredients. Mix the chicken from step 1 & massage gently. Make sure all the pieces are covered in the marinade. Cover with a cling & refrigerate for 4 hours. I cooked my chicken on the grill and covered directly, however, you can skew the chicken and refrigerate.
Step 3 – Preheat the oven at 200 degrees Celsius. Take the chicken out of refrigerator and put a minimum quote of oil on each piece. Let the chicken cook for 20-30 minutes. Turn the chicken or your skew every 5 minutes for the chicken cooks evenly. Use a toothpick to poke and make sure the chicken is tender.
For those who do not have an oven, cook the chicken in a non-stick pan for up to 10 mins at medium flame. Keep turning regularly for even cooking and to take sure the marinade does not burn. This one requires a bit of patience.
Step 4 – Serve hot with onions dipped in vinegar and red chili or the mint chutney.