No.202 Modern Butter Chicken

Is this a British dish or a Indian dish. The history of this dish is revolves around making a “curry” more palatable to British during the colonisation of Indian. With the amount of cream and butter added there is not a question that it would become a favourite.

Take that forward a hundred years and it had become a curry house stable in Britain. In the process it has become more western, becoming essentially slightly spiced and almost candied sweet tomato stew. Now in the past 10 years there has been a more to make it more “indian” pulling back on the cream and adding back in the spice. That is where my recipe comes in. It symbolic of the move to what we think is “Indian cooking”, but in reality is this true? This is where you could start a deep philosophical debate, but at the end of the day it tastes good.

Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

Serves: 4

Difficulty: Straight forward

500g of Diced Chicken Thighs

150ml of Yogurt

1 and half Onions

5 cloves of Garlic

2 inch piece of Ginger

200ml of Chicken Stock

400g tin of Tomatoes

2 tablespoons of Tomato Purée

1 Bay Leaf

3 Black Cardomon pods

1 tablespoon of Garam Marsala

1 teaspoon of ground Cinnamon

1 teaspoon of ground Cumin

1 teaspoon of ground Chilli

1 teaspoon of Red Pepper Flakes

3 tablespoons of Honey

3 tablespoons of Double Cream

1. Grate half an onion, 2 cloves of garlic and 1 inch of ginger. Mix with the yogurt and chilli flakes.

2. Mix together with chicken and marinate for 1 hour or overnight if possible.

3. Slice the remaining onion and cook on medium heat until softened with a little oil.

4. Once softened grate the garlic and ginger before adding.

5. Now add the bay leaf, tomato purée, cardamom, garam marsala, cinnamon, cumin and ground chilli to the onions. Cook out on low heat for 2 minutes.

6. Add the stock and tinned tomato and simmer for 30 minutes.

7. Meanwhile remove the chicken form the marinate and cook in the oven at 210 degrees Celsius or on the BBQ. This should take 20-25 minutes and be slightly charred.

8. Remove the cardomon and bay leaf from the sauce. Then blend with a stick blender. Add the honey and the cream.

9. Add the chicken to the sauce and serve with rice or naan.

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