I haven’t made butter chicken in awhile. In fact, I haven’t made any chicken dish in a long while. So we went to the store the other day and carried back 2 chickens. It’s also been awhile since I’ve broken down a bird…which took a lot longer than expected. Nothing compares to the days and hours of breaking down bird after bird in meat class. Maybe it was eating Indian and Ethiopian food the last 2 days that made me crave something heavily spiced. Whatever the inspiration, this is my best butter chicken yet. Side dishes include basmati rice (seasoned with garlic, shallots, turmeric, kosher salt) and a farmer’s market salad (mustard greens, chard, kale, asian pears, avocado) with a lemon vinaigrette. Here’s a recipe that yields lots of leftovers and freezes well:
Butter Chicken Recipe
Yields: Approx 12 servings (if eaten with side dishes)
¼ C Almonds (sliced or whole — doesn’t matter since it will be ground)
1 Onion, diced
4 Cloves garlic
1 C Chicken stock (1 tsp of chicken bouillon paste and 1 C h20)
2 cans tomato sauce (plus 1 C h20 to rinse out cans)
1/2 C Garam masala seasoning (I used Sadaf brand)
2 T Curry powder
5 T Butter
2 chickens (4 breasts + 4 thighs), 1” cubes
- Toast almonds in a saute pan then put into blender.
- In same saute pan, add oil and saute onion until soft. Add whole garlic cloves.
- Add chicken stock to deglaze pan. Pour ingredients into Vitamix and blend until desired texture (i.e. smooth and creamy). Caution: Blending hot ingredients in a blender can lead to scalds and burns if not done correctly. Take off the plastic lid from the rubber lid piece, cover hole with a folded kitchen towel (thick), and blend. The towel will keep the contents from spurting all over the place and also allow the steam to escape.
- Toast garam masala and curry spices in a stock pot, then add the blended onion and garlic.
- Salt chicken generously then saute in batches until caramelized (in original pan). Add caramelized chicken to sauce. Add ¼ C white wine to saute pan to deglaze, then add to sauce. Allow contents to come to a rolling boil. Reduce heat to a low simmer/bubble and allow at least 15 minutes for the chicken to cook all the way through and flavors to meld.
- Finish off with 5T of butter to round out flavors and adjust seasonings as needed.