Monday, February 28, 2011


Murgh Makhani, otherwise known as just "Murgh!" (the exclamation point is required) in my house.  I've been making this dish for years, and it was the first Indian recipe I tried.  I've always loved murgh makhani; the best I've ever had was at an Indian restaurant in England.  I got the original recipe for my version from a friend at work.  Over the years, I've changed the spice mixture and the amount of sauce I make. Further, I cook it at a lower temperature at the end since I use nonfat yogurt mixed with the heavy cream.  I learned the hard way that if I heat nonfat yogurt too much, it looks fine for about a minute, and then instantly turns into a nasty looking mixture of curdled yogurt bits and clear liquid.  This dish is very flavorful and smells wonderful.  The lemon juice adds a nice tang to it, and the spice blend works really well if you like paprika.  I always end up adding more after I taste it.  Especially hot paprika.  If you like sauce, this is the meal for you!  I serve it over rice made in a rice cooker.  I make 1.5 cups because my husband loves rice.  You could definitely get away with less rice. 


Adapted from Too Many Chefs
Serves 2 with a ton of sauce.

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
3 Tbsp butter
4 shallots, sliced into thin strips (depending on the size of your shallots, you might want to use 3)
1 Tbsp ginger, minced
1 Tbsp garlic, minced
1 Tbsp chili powder
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp hot paprika (if you don't have/don't like hot paprika just use 3 tsp total of regular paprika)
1 tsp ground cumin
1 bay leaf  (tearing the leaf in a few places helps to release the flavor)
1 14 oz can tomato sauce
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt  (or more)
2/3 cup heavy cream  (or more)
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup toasted almonds, divided
1/4 cup golden raisins (optional, I don't use them)
3-4 Tbsp fresh chopped cilantro (optional, I love it but I know some people think cilantro is gross)

1) Melt the butter in a large pan.  Over medium heat, cook the shallots until soft (5-7 minutes).  While shallots are cooking, cut the chicken into bite sized pieces.
2) When shallots are cooked, remove them from the pan and put them in a bowl. Leave as much butter behind in the pan as you can. If there is very little or no butter left, add another tablespoon and let it melt. 
3) Increase heat to medium high and add the chicken.  Cook it through.  Add the ginger and garlic, and all the spices (garam masala through bay leaf).  Stir until chicken is coated evenly and the spices become fragrant. (1-2 minutes).
4) Deglaze the pan with a splash or two of water and scrape up all the spices stuck to the pan.
5) Add the tomato sauce and put the shallots back in the pan. Stir. 
6) Simmer for 8-10 minutes to let the tomato sauce thicken.
7) While the tomato sauce is cooking, mix the yogurt and cream together.
8) When the tomato sauce is done simmering, taste it and adjust spices if you want.  I usually end up adding more paprika (both regular and hot) and sometimes more chili powder.  Then stir in the lemon juice and remove the bay leaf.
9) Take a few Tbsp of the tomato sauce and mix it into the yogurt/cream mixture.  I stir in a good bit of sauce, probably 3 or 4 spoonfuls. 
10) Reduce heat to low (important!) and pour yogurt/cream mixture into the chicken.  Stir well until the sauce is mixed very well and the sauce is heated.  If you are using nonfat yogurt, don't overcook it.  Taste again and see if you want to add any more spices, including salt and pepper. 
11) Stir in cilantro and 1/2 of the almonds. 
12) Serve over rice and sprinkle the remaining almonds on top. 

1 comment:

Michelle said...

OoooOOOOoooooo! :D On my to-do list after the cookbook research is to learn how to make good Indian dishes like this. You can bet I'll be hitting you up for advice!

I made pulled pork! *happy dance* You have to try this recipe:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...