Butter chicken

How to make the best butter chicken – without cashews – low in calories – silky gravy

Delicious with piping hot steamed white rice
With warm freshly baked chapatis

Why not cheer up your Friday night with this silky butter chicken curry? Even if you are not quite a curry fan, I bet that you will fall head over heels with this dish! Who wouldn’t? You simply cannot resist this silky smooth gravy and the delicate, boneless pieces of chicken that will melt in your mouth. The best news is that this dish is super easy to make without going through a long and strenuous cooking process. Therefore, it’s ideal for young people; this is your kind of dish to try out!

I present this easy/healthy recipe after eliminating some ingredients such as cashew nuts, tomato passata, and yoghurt, which usually are added into this dish. My aim is to minimize the effort and achieve glorious results, keeping in mind that the dish should not contain too many calories, yet to be supreme in taste!

I suggest that you just go through the recipe while making quick mental notes about the ingredients, and the whole process of making it. This will allow you to get an idea about the cooking method, if you are a novice in Asian cuisine. Finally, jot down all the required ingredients and go shopping! Do not forget to buy some flatbreads or basmati rice. Butter chicken and steamed basmati rice is a real love story!

Good luck!

Butter chicken recipe

Ingredients needed:

Chicken breasts ( cut into cubes)300g
Double cream1/4 cup
Onions1 large
Tomatoes ( riped and juicy)1 large
Bay leaves 2
Ginger1/2 inch piece
Garlic 4/5 cloves
Cloves and cardamoms 3 each
Water (hot)1 1/2 cups
Salt1 tsp or to taste
Sugar1/8 tsp ( A few pinches)
Oil1 tbsp
Butter2 tbsp
INDIAN MASALA
Garam masala1/2 tsp
Cumin powder (Jeera powder)1/2 tsp
Coriander powder ( Dhaniya powder)1/2 tsp
Turmeric1/2 tsp
Chilli powder1tsp
Kasoori methi powder (Dried Fenugreek leaves)1 1/2tbsp
Butter Chicken ingredients
Ingredients

Let’s make it:

Step 1 – Marinate the chicken and fry

  • Marinate the chicken pieces with a little salt, chili powder, turmeric powder and a few drops of lemon.
  • Keep aside for 20 mins
  • Brush a little oil in a pan and stir fry the chicken pieces
  • Keep aside

Step 2 – Cook the chicken in spices

  • In a pan, heat 2tbsp of oil and saute the onions with a couple of bay leaves, 3/4 cloves and cardamoms
  • Fry chopped tomatoes and ginger & garlic crushed together
  • Add in the spices: Cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, garam masala powder (1/2 tsp each) and chilli powder – 1tsp
  • Stir fry a minute or two
  • Drop the prepared chicken into the pan and stir fry until chicken pieces are coated well with the spices. If too dry, sprinkle a little water
  • Pour hot water just above the chicken. ( Do not pour too much water at this point)
  • Cover and cook under medium flame for 15mins
  • Open the lid and pour more hot water, cover and cook another 5 mins

Step 3 – Final therapy – make the silky gravy

  • Now pour 1/4 cup of double cream, stir well, close the lid and cook under a very low flame for 5-8 mins. (You can add more double cream if you prefer a thick gravy)
  • Open the lid, drop a dollop of butter. You are cooking butter chicken remember?
  • Now take a handful of Kasoori Methi and crush it by rubbing your palms together and drop into the pot. This is the vital therapy which gives the distict aroma of butter chicken)
  • Add in 1/2tsp of sugar and stir through
  • Cover and simmer a little while. (5 – 8 mins)
  • Let the pot sit for 10 -15mins until all the flavours soak into the chicken pieces and oil floats above the gravy
  • Done!
  • Enjoy with a plate full of steaming white rice or freshly baked rotis

Chicken Curry – Ideal for weekend lunch or a special occasion

chicken curry recipe
chicken curry

This glossy chicken dish will look absolutely mouthwatering and instantly win over any other dish on the table. Make this a bit spicier than usual by adding a couple of extra dashes of chilli powder if you are cooking it in the winter months, making it extra appealing to your tastebuds. Trust me, the delicious spicy taste will make you feel instantly warm and happy.

You can serve this delicious chicken curry with anything. My favourite is warm, crusty homebaked fluffy bread! Moping a chunk of spongy bread in the silky gravy and savouring the taste nice and slowly is the height of satisfaction of eating beautiful chicken curry. To me, it’s the combination of aroma, appearance, and of course, taste that appeals, not each in isolation.

So, let’s get ready and make it;

Chicken cut into bite-size pieces or drumsticks
(skin out)
500 g
Chilli powder, preferably Kashmiri chili powder1tsp or a little more
for the marinate and
1 tsp more
Turmeric1/2 tsp
Cloves and Cardamoms4 each
Roasted curry powder2 tsp for the marinate
& 1 tsp more
Salt to taste
Ginger and garlic pound into a fine paste
Onions (medium)2
Green chilies – slit and some curry leaves2
Coconut milk powder (optional)1/2 tbsp
Vinegar1 tbsp
Marinated chicken
  • First, marinate the pieces of chicken by rubbing salt, turmeric, chilli powder and roasted curry powder and keep aside for at least 1 hr
  • Now, deep fry the chicken pieces in hot oil and place them on several kitchen papers stacked together, until all the excess oil drains out. Do not fry too long until its not too hard and crusty. Just a couple of minutes would be enough.
  • Take a wide pan and fry the onions until soft and add the cloves and cardamoms
  • Add ginger and garlic paste and fry for a few minutes
  • Now add roasted curry powder and chilli powder. Throw a few crushed curry leaves and fry gathering all spices in oil
  • Add the chicken pieces with vinegar at this point and fry under low heat until all spices are coated. This will take several minutes.
  • Add 1/4 cup of hot water and fry until all the chicken pieces are coated with spices
  • Add up to 2 cups of hot water, cover and cook on medium flame
  • Check after 15/20 mins and if the chicken pieces are tender. If needed, add more hot water. Cover and cook further 10 mins under very low flame. This will allow the oils to float on the top.
  • Finally, add 1/2 tbsp of coconut milk powder and throw more crushed curry leaves and cover the lid.
  • Let the pot rest for at least 15 mins before serving
Spicy chicken curry
chicken in black bean sauce

Let’s make Chicken in black bean sauce – popular Chinese dish

Chicken in black bean sauce

Don’t we all love Chinese food simply because of its unique mouthwatering flavours and the most uncomplicated techniques of making them? It’s just a matter of chopping all and dropping all into a pan and give a quick toss and a turn, pour in sauces and, voila! job done! It is that easy and the taste is supreme too.

The generous amount of vegetables used in this recipe make it much healthier and versatile. While stirfrying the veggies I tried my best to keep their original colours intact which in turn made this dish look absolutely delightful with such an exotic assortment of colours blended together!

I bet, you will stop buying this dish from take-a-ways once you start making it at home because the homemade chicken in black bean sauce with all the colourful and crunchy veggies will become an instant favourite of your family and friends. There are many brands of black bean sauce available in supermarkets but I have always been loyal to the Blue Dragon brand which has the right balance of flavours and the right thickness to the sauce. Also, Amoy brand soy sauce goes just so well with it.

So, let’s get on with making this glorious dish!

Chicken in black bean sauce
Served with yellow sticky basmati rice

Ingredients you will need:

Chicken breast (cut into bite-size pieces)250 g
Bell peppers (yellow, green, red) carrots and broccoli1/2 cup each
Black bean sauce4tbsp
Lemon1/2
Soya sauce (dark)2tbsp
Onion1
Spring onions1 bunch
Black pepper powder 1/2tsp
Garlic3-4 cloves
Olive oil or any other cooking oil2tbsp
Salt, pepper powder and lemon juice for marinating the chicken
Chicken in black bean sauce
Best brand of black bean sauce


Let’s make :

Chicken in black bean sauce
  • Rub salt, pepper and lemon juice on chicken and leave for 20 mins
  • Heat oil in a pan
  • Drop the chicken and stir-fry until chicken is properly cooked
Chicken in black bean sauce
  • Heat 1tbsp of oil in a vok and drop garlic and cubed onion first. Stir fry
  • Drop all the veggies and stir fry until cooked enough. Keep them slightly crunchy
Chicken in black bean sauce
  • Now, add the chicken and give stir fry all together for a minute or two
Chicken in black bean sauce
  • Push all to a corner of the vok.Pour in soy sauce and black bean sauce and let the sauces boil
  • Bring all together
  • Give a good toss
  • Adjust the taste
  • Serve hot!
hard chicken curry

Delicious Hard Chicken curry- supremely flavourful – EASY RECIPE

Hard chicken curry

What is hard chicken?

Hard chicken is actually from an old granny bird, lucky enough to save herself from the butcher for a long time and who enjoyed a full life after laying eggs provides hard chicken meat.

Hard chicken meat is available only at ethnic butches not on supermarket shelves. So, remember to ask them to remove skin and cut the bird into medium size pieces which makes the cooking process much easier.

I particularly love the deep flavours in the chewy meat on the bone and it is very satisfying to know that there is hardly any fats in it. A piece of good news for those who are obsessed with counting calories!

Nutrition Facts

Just one full of chicken meat has 370 calories, hardly any fat but a significant amount of Potassium: 640mg

It is interesting to know that there are numerous names for hard chicken, depending on the country and region. I have listed some of them below;

  • Hard Chicken
  • Fowl
  • Old hen
  • Free Range chicken
  • Curry Chicken
  • Gam Kukulu mas (Sinhalese)
  • Desi chicken (Urdu)
  • Galina bird (Spanish)
  • Country chicken
  • Old backyard chicken
  • Natu Kodi (Telugu)
  • Nattu Kozhi (Tamil)
  • Nattu Koli
  • Kini Koli
  • Nati Koli (Kannada)
Hard chicken curry

Cooking technique:

You need to cook it low and slow to get the right flavours and texture. For instance, vinegar and potatoes help in tenderising the meat in slow cooking.  I must insist that cooking in the pressure cooker will cook the chicken rapidly but destroy its natural flavours. So, the Grand Ma’s old fashioned cooking on the stove in a pot will bring out its natural flavours and juices!

If you taste it once, you will always remember its extraordinary delicious taste. Do not forget to add a couple of tablespoons of coconut milk at the end which will contribute to a surprising level of flavours. Try this dish with hot rice, rotis, noodles, pasta or bread or with boiled cassava mixed with fresh coconut flakes which will complement the dish a great deal.

Ingredients needed:

Hard Chicken1 full cut into medium size pieces
Onions2 medium
Chilli powder (preferably Kashmiri chilli)1 tbsp
Vinegar 2 tbsp
Ginger root1 1/2 inch
Garlic5/6 cloves
Roasted curry powder1/2 tbsp
Turmeric1 tsp
Oil3 tbsp
Fresh coconut milk or Maggi coconut milk powder2 tbsp
Curry leavesA few crushed
Green chillies1 slit
Whole spices; Cardamoms, Cloves, Cinnamon, 4 each
Potatoes2 cut into chunks

Let’s get busy with cooking this delicious dish!

Hard chicken curry
Hard chicken curry

Let’s make it:

Step 1 : Marinate the chicken pieces

  • Marinate the chicken pieces with vinegar, salt,  turmeric, chilli powder, roasted curry powder, ginger and garlic paste and crushed curry leaves.
  • Cover and keep aside for at least 1 hr. (preferably overnight in the fridge for the chicken pieces to absorb the essence of spices and soften with vinegar)

Step 2: Roast the chicken in the pan

  • Heat up 2/3 tbsp of any oil in a wide pan
  • Add the whole spices; cloves, cinnamon, cardamom and a few curry leaves crushed
  • Saute chopped onions
  • Add freshly grated or crushed garlic and ginger
  • Fry a couple of minutes
  • Add a 1tsp of chilli powder and gather all the spices and fry (this will bring out a very tempting colour to the gravy once cooked)
  • Now drop the marinated chicken pieces
  • Stir fry the chicken pieces for nearly 10 mins in medium flame allowing the excess water to evaporate
  • Close the lid and lower the flame to the minimum.  Splash a little water if the pan is too dry. Let it sit for 5 mins. This will let all the natural juices to come out
  • Open the lid again, stir fry for 5 more mins gathering juices with chicken pieces until they are well coated
  • Pour water just above chicken pieces and close the lid. It has to cook for about 45 mins under medium flame. Give a stir occasionally
  • Add more water in between if the chicken pieces are hard
  • After 45 mins open and pour a cup of more hot water if the water level is low but the chicken pieces are still hard.  Cook until chicken pieces are tender enough. You must always add hot water not the cold water and it is quite alright to increase the amount of water gradually to yield enough gravy to go around!

Step 3: Add potatoes

  • Now, check salt and add more if you desire
  • Drop the potatoes and a slit green chilli
  • Close and simmer under low flame for 10mins
  • Finally, add 2 tbsps of fresh or Maggi instant coconut milk, a handful of curry leaves and cook for another 10 mins under very low flame.  This final therapy will contribute to the tempting colour of the curry and make it more flavourful too
  • Let the pot rest for 15 mins before serving (cook this curry on the night before and it will taste incredibly flavourful on the next day)
  • Tastes best with hot rice, rotis, noodles or with boiled cassava (maniyok) mixed with fresh coconut
Hard chicken curry
Hard Chicken curry served on a dome of hot rice is simply delicious!
Hard chicken curry
Boiled Cassava mixed with freshly grated coconut to go with the delicious Hard Chicken curry
creamy coconut chicken curry

Creamy Coconut Chicken curry

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What you need :

 Chicken thighs or drumsticks 300 g
Roasted curry powder 2 tbsp
Ginger and garlic grated 2 tbsp
Chilli powder 2 tsp
Turmeric powder 1/4 tsp
Vinegar 2 tsp
Maggi coconut milk powder or fresh coconut milk 2 tbsp
Cinnamon stick 2/3 cardamoms, 2 cloves  
Salt and pepper to taste
 Onion  1 large

Let’s make it:

Marinate the chicken

  • Massage the chicken pieces with grated ginger and garlic, chilli powder, roasted curry powder, vinegar, salt, pepper powder and turmeric powder.  Drop the cinnamon stick, curry leaves, cardamoms and cloves and mix all together.  Leave at least 1/2 hr – 1hr,  allowing the chicken pieces to soak up the flavours of spices

Fry

  • Heat up oil in a pan
  • Drop chopped onion and saute.  Add ginger and garlic grated along with whole spices and curry leaves.  Saute until they become slightly brown

Cook

  • Now add the marinated chicken
  • Fry on medium flame about 5 – 7 mins or until the chicken pieces become soft and lightly cooked
  • Now close the lid,  lower the flame to minimum and keep for about 5 mins.  This will allow all the juices to run out
  • Open the lid, scrape all the juices and mix everything thoroughly
  • Pour enough warm water just above the level of chicken
  • Cover and cook under low flame for 10 mins or until the chicken pieces are cooked properly

Flavour with coconut milk

  • Drop coconut milk powder to the side of the pan and mix with little gravy.  Then, gently shake the pan for coconut milk and gravy to come together
  • Cover and cook under low flame for another  2-3 mins
  • Drop an extra few curry leaves, broken into small pieces and let the curry rest for 10 mins.
  • Enjoy your silky, creamy coconut flavoured chicken curry with rice, bread or noodles
  • Simply gorgeous!
Chicken devilled

how to make Chicken devilled – Juicy and fiery flavours

Chicken devilled
Chicken devilled

Try this delicious, fiery chicken dish that goes like a love story with rice, noodles, or bread.  Add lots of veggies to give it a healthy version and kids will be thrilled to tuck into flavourful chicken pieces along with colourful vegetables, without a fuss. Super easy to fix and you will love every bite of it! Add a couple of slit green chilies to give it some heat during cold Autumn or winter months.

Tip:

Make a delicious wrap for your office/school lunch box. Just heat up a tortilla on the pan under very low heat, spread a little chili sauce or tomato sauce on, and place a large spoon full of devilled chicken in the middle and roll it up. Delicious!

Devilled chicken
Devilled chicken
Ingredients needed:
Chicken (skinless, bite-size pieces)300 g
Red, Yellow, and Green bell pepper1/2 each
Onion1
Lemon1
Leek/Spring onionsa handful
Carrots1 large
Ginger and garlic thinly diced1 tbsp
Soy sauce2 tbsp
Ketchup2 tbsp
Chilli sauce or chili garlic sauce2 tbsp
Chili powder, turmeric powder, salt, and lemon juice (for marinating the chicken) 
Ingredients

Let’s make it:

Prepare the veggies 
  • Cut bell peppers, onion and carrot into squares
  • Slice leeks lengthwise
  • Chop ginger and garlic thinly
  • Slit green chilies

Prepare the chicken

  • Marinate the chicken with little soy sauce, chili powder, turmeric powder,  lemon juice, and salt
  • Cover and  keep aside for 20 mins
  • Heat up oil and shallow fry the chicken until golden on medium heat.
  • Cover and keep aside
Stir fry
  • In a separate, wide wok add two tbsps of olive oil and heat up
  • Brown ginger and garlic
  • Add carrots and stir fry until  soft
  • Add all the bell peppers. Continue to stir fry
  • Add onion squares and give a good toss under high flame
  • Add chopped leeks
  • Give a good shake, toss, and a mix
  • Now push the vegetables to a corner of the wok

Bring all together

  • Pour all the sauces; soy, ketchup, chili garlic sauce into the spared space of the wok, let boil. (boiling sauces is essencial to bring out the real flavours)
  • Toss the chilli flakes on the sauces and stir it through
  • Now bring  the sauces and the vegetables together
  • Add the chicken pieces with all its juices
  • Stir fry on high flame for about 2/3 mins
  • Toss the slit green chilli
  • Give one last toss and it’s done!
  • Yum!!!!