This is a great recipe for this time of year–bbq season– but also very good in the oven – and you will want to make this all year long. It’s got great concentrated flavour, and all you have to do is put together a super-easy, yogurt-based marinade, score your chicken, let it marinate and then bbq or bake it. The yogurt base tenderizes your chicken and the Middle Eastern spices make it aromatic and exotic tasting. Make sure your spices are fresh – it makes all the difference. You will be making this again and again, so you might as well get some fresh spices. I like to serve some cucumber raita alongside. (recipe below). You can use any type of chicken pieces you like. I usually use bone-in chicken breast, skinned and cut in two. You can marinate a big batch of chicken and put half in the freezer — it’s perfect for that. This recipe makes enough marinade for about 5-6 pounds (3 kg) of chicken. It will be a family favourite. Great the next day for lunch on a salad or with rice. TRY!
Tandoori Chicken Marinade
1 medium onion, grated (or minced in processer)
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander seed
1/2 tsp tumeric (for colour, if you don’t have any, don’t worry about it)
¼ tsp cayenne (more if you like it hot)
1 tsp salt
1 cup plain yogurt
Juice of ½ lemon
[1-3 kgs of chicken pieces]
[½ cup melted butter for basting at the end.]
Mix up ingredients except chicken and melted butter–feel free to throw it all in the processor or grate and chop and mix by hand. Remove skin from chicken, and score deeply. Massage marinade into chicken. Best if meat is marinated for 24 hours. (minimum 6 hours)
*divide remaining marinade into freezer containers (1/2 cup each approx) and freeze. You can marinate the chicken and freeze it too -it works out perfectly. Defrost and use when needed.
If using BBQ
Turn one side of bbq on med-high. Put chicken in a foil pan. Place it on upper level on side of bbq that is unlit, to create a ‘convect’ affect. Cook until internal temp of 165 F., approx. 30-40 minutes. Remove chicken from pan with tongs and place on direct heat of grill. Baste with butter , turning until nicely charred. Serve with Cucumber Raita.
If using Conventional Oven
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place chicken in roasting pan. Cook until internal temp of 165F. Melt butter. Baste chicken with butter. Turn on broiler, and place chicken under broiler until browned and glistening. Baste again before serving. Serve with Cucumber raita.
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup grated cucumber
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander (optional)
Grate cucumber and squeeze out liquid with paper towel. Mix into yogurt with cumin and salt. If you have some fresh coriander (cilantro) around, add that in too. Serve with chicken.