Makhani Murgh Conquered!

I’d say I conquered the first Indian recipe attempt, even the kids liked it!

Forgive the crappy picture, but you get the gist.  I served the butter chicken with some spinach left from our final CSA bag from the farmer and store bought naan bread.  In the end it was not as intimidating as I thought to make.  It took a bit of extra prep to get all the ingredients for the tandoori chicken and garam masala.  But now that I have all the basics in the house it will be much easier to tackle some more dishes.  Now to decide which one that will be, I am thinking a seafood and maybe a homemade bread.

Velvet Butter Chicken (Makhani Murgh)
Source: Classic Indian Cooking by Julie Sahni

8 legs and breasts of tandoori chicken
3 cups canned tomatoes in puree, measured with puree
4 green chilies, seeded) or substitute 1/2 tsp. red pepper (cayenne)
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh ginger root
10 Tbsp. (1 1/4 sticks) sweet (unsalted) butter
4 tsp. ground cumin
1 Tbsp. paprika
2 tsp. Kosher salt
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 tsp. garam masala
2 tsp. ground roasted cumin seeds
1/4 cup firmly packed coriander (cilantro) leaves

Put tomatoes, green chilies, and ginger in a blender or food processor and blend to a fine puree.
Place 8 Tbsp. butter in a large heavy-bottomed pan, preferably one with a non-stick surface, over medium heat. When the foam begins to subside, add the chicken pieces and brown until they are brown and nicely seared all over. Remove with a slotted spoon into a bowl.
Add cumin and paprika to the butter in the pan, and cook, stirring rapidly, for 10-15 seconds. Add tomato puree to the pan, and cook, uncovered until sauce is thickened (bout 5-8 minutes), stirring constantly to prevent sticking and burning.
Add salt, cream, and chicken pieces. Gently stir in the chicken pieces. Coat chicken pieces evenly and thoroughly with sauce. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, uncovered until fat begins to separate from the sauce and a thin glaze appears on the surface (about 10 minutes.) Check and stir often to ensure that sauce is not burning.
Stir in the remaining 2 Tbsp. butter, garam masala, and roasted cumin. Turn off the heat, and let the dish stand covered, for 1/2 hour before serving.
When ready to serve, heat thoroughly, check for salt, and fold in chopped coriander (cilantro) leaves.


  1. Inspired2cook says:

    Oh Yumm!!! I love Indian food and butter chicken is one of my faves!!! I wish I could have some right now!!!

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