Indian Butter Chicken

After my first bite of this dish, I said that I thought this might be the best thing that I’ve ever made.  If you’re new to Indian food, this is a great way to dive in. The sauce is creamy and spicy, and is perfect for mopping up with some whole wheat naan. Adios, take out!

Indian Butter Chicken
by Just the Tip / Inspired by GoodLife Eats

Here’s what I used:

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2-3 tbsp fresh ginger, finely chopped (I used my beloved microplane)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (again, microplane)
  • 1 serrano pepper, chopped
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 (heaping) tsp garam masala
  • 1 (heaping) tsp chili powder
  • 1 (heaping) tsp ground cardamom
  • 3/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 6 oz tomato paste
  • 2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup half and half (or milk)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 3/4-inch chunks
  • 1/2 tsp coarse-ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • cooked brown rice (LOVE LOVE LOVE frozen pre-cooked brown rice from Trader Joe’s)
  • naan, for mopping
  • lime wedges
  • fresh cilantro, chopped

Here’s what I did:

  1. Combine the onion, ginger, garlic, and serrano in a food processor and process until it is a coarse paste.
  2. Heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium/medium-high heat. Sprinkle in the garam masala, chili powder, cardamom, and coriander and toast the spices in the oil for 1-2 minutes. Add in the onion mixture and cook for about 10 minutes until browned, stirring often.
  3. Scrape the mixture back into a food processor and add the tomato paste and chicken broth. Whirl until very smooth. Pour the mixture back into pan, add the half and half and bay leaves, and bring to a gentle boil over high heat (mixture will spatter a bit). Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring often, about 5-7 minutes. Turn off heat.
  4. Pat the chicken dry and season with salt and pepper. Set a large saute pan over high heat; add 1 tbsp butter and the chicken. Stir until chicken is no longer pink on the surface, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the chicken to the sauce and simmer over medium heat, stirring often, until chicken is no longer pink in the center, 3 to 4 minutes. Melt the remaining 2 tbsp of butter into the sauce until melted.
  5. Spoon the chicken and sauce onto rice. Squeeze a little lime juice over top and garnish with cilantro. Enjoy!
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