Monday, September 22, 2008
But is it really? Of course not! I don't own a tandoor - the clay oven in which the chicken should be cooked - and I don't use the copious quantities of cayenne and chili powder that produce the flaming hue of the real deal. Though most folks think the dish to be Indian, it actually was brought to India from Afghanistan. Whatever it's origins, this is a family friendly recipe that captures the spirit of the tandoor, rather than it's fire. A bit of a warning - while I think you'll enjoy this remarkably tender chicken, the masala spicing may not appeal to youngest of your children, and, while the chicken takes minutes to prepare, it needs time to marinate, so plan accordingly. Garam masala is available in the spice aisle of major supermarkets.
6 to 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon lemon juice, divided use
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup plain yogurt
Garnish: lemon slices; parsley
1) Brush both sides of chicken with 1/4 cup lemon juice. Cover, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2) Combine onion, garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin and remaining 1 tablespoon lemon juice in a blender jar. Process on high speed until a paste forms. Add paprika, garam masala, salt, cayenne pepper and yogurt: process until mixture is smooth.
3) Liberally spread both sides of chicken with yogurt mixture. Place in a baking dish; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 to 8 hours.
4) Move a rack to upper third of oven. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with foil. Spray an ovenproof cooling rack with nonstick spray; place rack in pan. Place chicken on rack and bake for 25 minutes. Yield: 4 to 6 servings.