What Is Butter Chicken?
Butter chicken is produced with marinated chicken that is first grilled and then served in a hearty sauce (also known as a curry) that has as its basis tomato, butter, and a unique spice mixture.
In contrast to most Indian curries, which begin with an onion and ginger garlic paste mixture cooked in oil, the basis for butter chicken is a tomato mixture cooked in butter, giving it a somewhat sweet flavor. Almonds and cashews increase the dish’s sweetness and richness.
The History of Butter Chicken
Butter chicken’s origins can only be traced back to the 1950s, when the cook at the renowned Delhi restaurant Moti Mahal accidently created the dish. To use up leftover tandoori chicken, chef Kundan Lal Gujral would frequently combine butter, tomatoes, and the remaining chicken in a saucepan.
He had no idea that this meal would become their top seller and help them gain notoriety. Though it’s actually a “special occasion” dish in Indian families, eateries all over the world have now adopted the recipe.
ingredients for indian butter chicken
Here are the ingredients you will need to marinate chicken for butter chicken masala, starting with:
Best chicken cut: For this dish, I suggest using either skinless, bone-in chicken or skinless, boneless chicken thighs. For optimal flavor, the chicken is first marinated, then pan-fried, and last cooked in the gravy. Additionally, this technique will cause boneless chicken breasts to lose their juicy texture. Because you can chop the flesh into bite-sized pieces and it retains its moisture all the way to the finish, I like to use boneless, skinless chicken thighs.
Yogurt: hanging curd or Greek yogurt. acts as a tenderizer and aids in the chicken’s absorption of the spices.
Spices: Garam masala (ideally handmade; see my garam masala recipe), coriander, turmeric, salt, and red chili powder (use paprika or cayenne as an alternative).
Ginger Garlic paste: Use ginger and garlic to make paste, which may be purchased or manufactured at home.
Onions: Although some recipes don’t call for them at all, I prefer to include them in very little amounts to harmonize the flavors.
Tomatoes: mostly a gravy made with tomatoes. Whenever feasible, use roma tomatoes.
The cashew nut: Without all that extra fat, which can occasionally become too much and cause you to feel bloated, you can add flavor and creaminess. The tomatoes and cashews simmer together and soften, making them incredibly simple to mix afterwards.
Butter: Despite what the general public thinks, butter chicken doesn’t require much of it. The buttery flavor comes from the creamy cashews, silky tomato sauce, and butter.
Canned chilies: The best chilies are dried Kashmiri chilies because they offer flavor and color without being too hot. They are neither spicy nor hot.
Although ketchup: isn’t a particularly traditional ingredient, it has the ideal combination of sweet, salty, and sour flavors and adds a little extra something.
kasuri methi: If you prepare Indian food, kasuri methi is a necessary component. A little goes a long way, so 100 grams will last you for a while. enhances the flavors of Indian curries.
For the chicken marinade:
- 28 oz (800g) boneless and skinless chicken thighs or breasts cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1/2 cup plain yogurt
- 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger (or finely grated)
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1 teaspoon of salt
For the sauce:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons ghee (or 1 tbs butter + 1 tbs oil)
- 1 large onion, sliced or chopped
- 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon ginger, minced or finely grated
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 1/2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 14 oz (400 g) crushed tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder (adjust to your taste preference)
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
- 1 cup of heavy or thickened cream (or evaporated milk to save calories)
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kasoori methi (or dried fenugreek leaves)
- In a large bowl, season the chicken with salt, pepper, 1 teaspoon of chili powder, and the turmeric. Let sit for 15 minutes to marinate.
- Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large pot over medium heat. Brown the chicken, then remove from the pot.
- Melt another 2 tablespoons of butter in the pot, then add the onion, garam masala, remaining teaspoon of chili powder, the cumin, ginger, garlic, cayenne, cinnamon, salt, and pepper. Cook until fragrant.
- Add the tomato sauce and bring to a simmer.
- Add the water and cream and return to a simmer.
- Return the chicken to the pot, cover, and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
- Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and season with more salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve the chicken over rice and garnish with cilantro.
- Meal planning made easy with the Tasty app.
Serving: 1serving | Calories: 491kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 198mg | Sodium: 963mg | Potassium: 895mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1405IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 2mg