Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Tandoori Chicken

I have never cared for the spice ginger much. I don't know what it is about it, but a lot of times I feel like it overpowers the food itself. On the other hand, I love Asian food and many recipes do call for ginger in either dry or fresh form. Often, I would just reduce the ginger so I wouldn't be able to taste it on my first bite.

I guess things are changing around here and I'm a "ginger-convert". A few weeks ago my baking friend Grapefruit suggested Gingered Carrot Cookies for our bi-weekly Baking with Dorie Challenge and I loved them so much I have baked them several times since.

So when the newest Food Network Magazine arrived and I saw the Tandoori Chicken in their "Weeknight Cooking" column I wasn't turned off right away, in fact, I was intrigued. After further examination of the recipe and seeing that it called for a big 2-inch chunk of fresh ginger I was getting doubtful, but decided it was as good of a time as ever to get over my ginger phobia.

The recipe is easily put together, the meat only marinates a total of about 20 minutes. My husband decided to throw the chicken thighs on the grill which gave them a nice bit of char and added another dimension of flavor to the chicken. I served this chicken with the yogurt sauce (which helps tone down some of the heat) called for in the recipe, rice and a simple side salad.

The verdict? I was in love with this chicken as was the rest of the family. We all couldn't get enough of this meal. The ginger taste was there, but along with all the other spices and ingredients it didn't overpower anything, just enhance. This dish is going in my permanent recipe files and will be made many more times. I hope you'll give this one a try as well!

Tandoori Chicken
(Print this Recipe)

8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs (about 2 1/2 pounds)
Juice of 1 Lemon
Kosher Salt
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons plain yogurt (I used Greek style)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 small red onion, roughly chopped
3 cloves garlic, smashed
1 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
4 teaspoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 3/4 teaspoons hot paprika
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
Cooked rice, for serving (optional)

Preheat the broiler.* Make shallow cuts in the chicken thighs with a sharp knife. Toss the chicken with the lemon juice and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt in a large bowl.

Pulse 2 tablespoons yogurt, the vegetable oil, onion, garlic, ginger, tomato paste, coriander, cumin,
1 1/2 teaspoons  paprika, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a food processor to make a paste. Toss the chicken in the mixture and let marinate 15 minutes.

Place the chicken on a foil-lined broiler pan. Broil, turning once, until slightly charred and a thermometer inserted into the center registers 165 degrees F, 5 to 6 minutes per side.

Meanwhile, combine the remaining 1/2 cup yogurt and 1/4 teaspoon paprika, the cilantro and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Top the chicken with the yogurt sauce and serve with rice, if desired.

Note: If you have the opportunity to grill the chicken thighs on a charcoal or even a gas grill, I would suggest going that route as it adds so much flavor.

Adapted from: Food Network Magazine


  1. I'm not a fan of ginger either. I ate a big chunk of it when I was a teenager and eating sushi, and I've been overly sensitive to it since. However, this looks and sounds delicious. I think I'm going to make it next week! Thanks!

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  3. do you make anything original?


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