A splash of butter teases chicken chunks to touch new heights

A delicacy, murg makhani, could be the pride of any restaurant. Diligently marinated chicken is smeared in a few spices for about an hour and then given a tandoor treatment or skewed in the oven. Cooked chicken is then drowned in rich tomato gravy.

Murg Makhani

Ingredients

For chicken marination

500 gms boneless chicken pieces

4 tbsp yoghurt

2 tsp ginger paste

2 tsp garlic paste

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp cumin powder

1 tsp red chilli powder (degi mirch)

Salt to taste

For the gravy

1 kg tomatoes chopped

4 tbsp butter

1 tbsp fresh cream

1 tsp degi chilli powder

2 tsp chopped peeled garlic

2 tsp finely chopped ginger

2 tsp finely chopped green chilli

Salt to taste

4 tsp honey

Half a tsp kasoori methi

For garnish

Butter cubes

Fresh cream

1 coriander sprig

Method

Make small incisions on the chicken pieces. Mix the marinade ingredients together and add the chicken pieces. Mix well. Let the chicken marinate for at least an hour. Pre-heat the oven to 350 F. Skewer the chicken pieces and keep a tray underneath to collect the drippings or half cook on a tandoor.

Now heat butter in a saucepan and add red chilli powder. Stir for a few seconds without burning the chilli, add the chopped tomatoes and salt. Cook on medium flame till tomatoes are soft. Then pass the tomato pulp through a soup strainer or a sieve.

Bring it back on fire and then add chicken pieces to the gravy. Cover and simmer on low heat till the chicken is cooked. Then add cream and honey, sprinkle with kasoori methi. Check seasoning and consistency. Before serving, garnish with butter and fresh cream and place coriander sprig on top.

Rakesh Sethi, Exective Chef at Ramada Plaza, Ashoka Road, particularly loves to dabble with Italian and Indian cuisines. It is the creativity cooking offers that keeps Sethi rooted to the profession. “I love to play with the natural colours of vegetables and ingredients,” he says