Friday, March 18, 2016

Indian Butter Chicken (Murgh Makhani)

I love Indian curries.  I think this is the third recipe just for Butter Chicken that I have on this blog.  I just can't stop trying new recipes, though.  This one is different in that it uses ground almonds/almond flour to thicken the sauce, and I really, really liked it this way.  (I have a Chicken Korma recipe on here that uses ground cashews, and I really like that one too.)  I enjoyed this the first day, and of course the leftovers were even better.  As always, my 4-year old inhaled this.  He can never get enough Indian (or Thai) food. (Before making this, read the recipe through, since the chicken needs to marinate.)
Indian Butter Chicken (Murgh Makhani)
adapted from The Daring Gourmet

1½ cups plain full fat yogurt
¼ cup ground almonds/almond flour (blanched or unblanched)
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1½ teaspoons minced garlic
1½ teaspoons minced ginger
2 teaspoons salt
1 pinch sugar
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons garam masala
½ teaspoon ground cardamom
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon crushed bay leaves
¼ teaspoon or more Kashmiri chili powder or cayenne pepper for heat (optional, if you like it spicy)
1.5- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken cut into bite-sized pieces
2 tablespoons ghee (can substitute oil or butter)
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced ginger
1 (14 oz) can tomato puree (can substitute plain tomato sauce)
1 cardamom pod (I used green)
¼ cup butter
⅓ cup heavy cream
Chopped fresh cilantro for garnish
Steamed jasmine or basmati rice, for serving

1.  Combine the yogurt with the almonds, lemon juice and spices and stir to combine. Add the chicken and stir to coat. Marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

2.  Heat the ghee in a Dutch oven or large skillet over medium-high heat and cook the onion until soft and translucent and beginning to turn golden, 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute. Add the chicken and all the marinade and bring it to a simmer. Simmer until the chicken turns white. Add the tomato puree and cardamom pod. Return to a simmer, reduce the heat to medium, cover and simmer for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the butter and cream and stir until dissolved. Add salt to taste. Remove the cardamom pod.

3.  Serve with steamed jasmine or basmati rice and/or fresh naan bread. Garnish with some chopped fresh cilantro and swirl in a little extra cream.  This sauce tastes great the next day!
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