Chicken Makhani {Indian Butter Chicken}

Next to Chicken Tikka Masala and Chicken Coconut korma – which are the two standard Indian dishes you will find on the menu of every indian restaurant – the next most popular dish is probably chicken makhani, which is one of my all time favorites! When I was working as a waitress at an Indian Restaurant back in England, we got to have dinner after every shift, so I got to try lots of “weird” dishes I wouldn’t have usually ordered from the menu! Some people are fine just ordering chicken tikka masala every single time {my husband!} ;-) But if you are looking to try something new and different, without it being too “weird,” this would be the perfect dish for you to try! It has a creamy, tomato based sauce like the chicken tikka masala, but has added golden raisins and cashews and is a little sweeter like the coconut kurma– so it’s the perfect combination of both, and is SO delicious!

I thought I would develop this recipe based on the bombay house recipe – simply because their indian food can’t be beat! On their menu it says: “tandoori chicken, with onions, garlic, ginger, tomatoes, cream, cashews and golden raisins.” So, this recipe has a tandoori chicken marinade, and a sauce with the perfect combination of all of those wonderful ingredients! Honestly, I was afraid of how it would turn out…. my indian recipes usually take me a few attempts to get right, and I had a couple of friends over for dinner trying my “experiment” for the first time, so the pressure was on! But somehow I lucked out with a pretty awesome recipe! I hope you guys like this as much as the Kurma and Chicken Tikka Masala! Enjoy!

Ingredients:
{for the tandoori chicken marinade}
4 chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 cup plain yoghurt
1 Tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp cayenne/red pepper
2 tsp black pepper
2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground ginger
2 minced garlic cloves
{for the sauce}
1 Tbsp unsalted butter
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 small onion, diced
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp coriander
2 tsp garam masala
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 can (14.5oz) tomato sauce
1 can (14.5oz) chopped tomatoes
1/2 cup-1 cup heavy whipping cream
{to serve}
3/4 cup cashews
1/2 cup golden raisins

Directions:
Combine the chicken with the ingredients for the marinade in a large ziploc bag, or dish, and marinade for 1-2 hours in the fridge, then discard the marinade.

Grill or cook the chicken in a high sided skillet over medium high heat for about 10 minutes, or until no longer pink inside.

Melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and onion and sauté for a minute or two, until the onion is softened. Add the ginger, cumin, paprika, coriander, garam masala, salt and pepper and stir for 1 minute, until blended, and fragrant. Stir in the tomato sauce, chopped tomatoes, and cooked chicken, and simmer for 10-15 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Add cream according to taste (1/4 cup for spicy, 1/2 cup for medium, 1-1/2 cups for mild), along with the cashews and raisins, and salt to taste.

serve with white rice, naan, and mango chutney, and garnish with fresh cilantro.

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<3 Sarah xoxo