Tandoori Chicken


If you go to any Indian restaurant, you will most likely find this item on the menu. The chicken is cooked in a tandoor oven which is designed to cook meats and Indian flatbreads at a very high temperature. I love this recipe because you can marinate it overnight and fix it on the grill the next day. The deep red color that is usually associated with the restaurant version is achieved with red food coloring but this recipe uses paprika.

Tandoori Chicken
Recipe Courtesy of Maya Kaimal

4 chicken breast halves and 8 drumsticks
1 tablespoon finely grated garlic
1 teaspoon finely grated ginger
2 teaspoons paprika
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds, finely ground with a mortar and pestle
Spice Mixture
4 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 medium red onion, cut into rings
1 lime, cut into think wedges

Twenty-four hours before serving, skin chicken and cut each breast in half. Make deep slits 1 inch apart on each piece and halfway to the bone.

In a large bowl combine garlic, ginger, paprika, fennel seeds, spice mixture, lemon juice, salt, yogurt, sour cream, and oil. Add chicken pieces and toss, making sure marinade gets into each slit. Cover bowl and refrigerate 24 hours.

Prepare grill.

An hour before serving, wipe excess marinade off chicken. Place on grill and cook until chicken is at an internal temperature of 170 degrees. Halfway through grilling process, turn pieces and baste both sides with melted butter.

Garnish with onion rings and lime wedges.

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