Tandoori Chicken is a highly popular dish in India and South Asia. The chicken is marinated for the period of 8-24 hour in spices, yogurt, garam masala. The chicken is then cooked at high temperatures in a tandoor (clay oven), but can also be prepared on a traditional barbecue grill or oven. Tandoori chicken is usually characterized by its red fiery look or orangey color from turmeric. This recipe kinda lies in between. The chicken isn’t all too red or orangey.
According to the cookbook At home with Madhur Jaffrey, Tandoori chicken tastes just as good cold as it does hot, which is perfect for everyday meals, formal dinners, and picnics. If you properly wrapped and refrigerate the chicken, they may hold for 5-6 days. But our Tandoori chicken didn’t make it to 5-6 days though. They were gone fast!
TANDOORI CHICKEN WITH MINT (4 servings)
4 whole chicken legs (about 2 3/4 lbs), skinned and separated into drumsticks and thighs
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
one 3-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp homemade garam masala or store-bought
2 tsp ground cumin seeds
1 cup plain yogurt
3 Tbsp olive or canola oil or ghee
4 Tbsp finely chopped fresh mint
1. Cut 2 deep diagonal slits into the fleshy parts of each thighs and drumsticks. Put the chicken parts on a large plate in a single layer. Rub both sides first with salt and then the lemon juice. Set aside for 20 minutes
2. Meanwhile, put the onions, garlic, ginger, cayenne, garam masala, cumin and yogurt into a blender and blend until you have a smooth paste. Put the chicken and all accumulated juices in a bowl. Add the paste from the blender and mix well. Cover and refrigerate overnight or 24 hour
3. Preheat oven to 500 F. Oven may varies, so be sure you know your oven well and make sure oven is clean because if not, any remnants in there will get burned badly at 500 F and causes smoke.
Remove chicken from the marinade and lay the pieces in a single layer in a baking tray. Brush with oil and then sprinkle with half the mint. Bake 15 minutes. Turn the pieces over, brush with more oil, and sprinkle the remaining mint over the top. Bake another 5 minutes or longer until chicken are cooked through