chicken recipes

Butter Me Up, Baby!

Butter me up....

Butter me up….

I really need a bit of FLS – Food, Love and Shopping! Life around the Sujanani/L’Etang household has been hectic! After 5 months of working on my new project, ‘The Holi Cow’ – Cooking School and Deli, I need 100mg of something to calm myself and a few large G & T’s to wash them down!

Building renovations are not fun! I throw tantrums almost daily – what was supposed to be a three-week stint has turned into a five month nightmare! Well, the one good thing about all of this is that I cook way more than I used to relieve the stress. I am curvier for sure…but well fed and spending my quiet moments dreaming up recipes for a new book!

I have also taken a serious shine to disappearing off to the mall..These are just the commercial breaks a woman like me needs to keep focused…after all, who wants to come home to a grumpy wife??? So, I am doing my best to stay cheerful and that is exactly the sort of therapy I need…it’s a feast for the soul and trust me….enough to take away anyone’s building blues!

There are just some days though when nothing seems to add cheer to a tough day! These are the days when calories don’t count. So, when all else fails I tend to spoil myself up by preparing one of my best treats….Butter Chicken!

Here is the recipe:

Butter Chicken

Serves 4


For the chicken:
800g chicken thighs and drumsticks, skinned
Salt to season
20ml crushed ginger
20ml crushed garlic
15ml red chilli powder
5ml ground cumin
7,5ml ground coriander
2,5ml ground cardamom
2,5ml turmeric
60ml lemon juice
60ml fresh cream
40ml Spar sunflower oil

Place the chicken in a mixing bowl and season with salt.
Pound the ginger and garlic until smooth.
Rub the pounded mix over the chicken pieces.
Rub the spices over the chicken pieces.
Pour the lemon juice and fresh cream over the chicken.
Mix well to cover the chicken pieces with marinade.
Leave in the refrigerator to marinate for 4 – 6 hours.
Place the chicken on a roasting pan and drizzle the sunflower oil over.
Roast in a preheated oven at 200 degrees celsius for 20 minutes.
Check the chicken every 10 minutes and turn them over to brown evenly.
It must not be cooked through and the chicken slightly pink near the bone.
Once the chicken has cooled, debone the pieces and discard the bones.

For the sauce:

3 x 400g tins Spar whole peeled tomatoes, chopped
200ml boiling water
10ml crushed ginger
4 garlic cloves, crushed
4 cardamom pods
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
15ml Curry Me Home red chilli powder
45ml whole cashews
60ml boiling water
Salt to season
5ml Curry Me Home ground cumin
5ml Curry Me Home ground coriander
5ml Curry Me Home garam masala
100ml cold butter
2 green chillies, sliced
10ml dried kasori methi, optional
7,5ml sugar
60ml fresh cream

For the sauce:

Soak the cashew nuts in 60ml boiling water for 10 minutes.
Place the cashews in a liquidiser and process until smooth.
Place the tomatoes, boiling water, ginger, garlic, cardamom, bay leaf and cinnamon stick into an AMC pot and bring to the boil.
Simmer on a low heat until the tomatoes have broken down completely.
Use the back of a wooden spoon to press the tomatoes against the side of the pot.
Leave to cool slightly.
Place the tomatoes in a liquidiser and process until smooth.
Pass the tomatoes through a fine strainer using a wooden spoon once again to press down.
Discard the pulp and pour the smooth tomato sauce into a pot.
Add the cashew paste, red chilli powder, salt, cumin, coriander and garam masala.
Simmer on a low heat until the sauce thickens.
Add the green chilli and deboned chicken with the pan juices and simmer until cooked through.
Add the kasori methi and sugar.
Gently work the cold butter into the sauce – do not over cook as the sauce will split.
Stir in the cream and simmer for a minute.
Check the seasoning and adjust if necessary.

Yudhika’s tips:
It’s best to marinate the chicken overnight for the best flavour.
The chicken is traditionally cooked in a tandoor.
You could grill the chicken over charcoal braai to get the authentic smoky flavour.