Can you believe this is the first time I've made tandoori chicken per se. I have made chicken tikka masala and butter chicken, but never made it on its own to have as part of a meal. After seeing a couple of gorgeous tandoori chicken recipes in the blogosphere, I was itching to give it a go. So I got down to it yesterday and wasn't disappointed :)
I don't get a whole chicken, sliced into small pieces at the grocery store, and I don't know how to cut a whole chicken on my own, which means thighs and drumsticks are what I use in curries and bakes. Its so damn boring to eat it again and again and it doesn't even taste that great. They are huge, chunky pieces and I hate the very look of it. So instead of those I used chicken wings for the preparation and I am so so so glad I did, it turned out perfect. Juicy and moist and no hassle of cleaning and cutting (we get skinless wings here, all cleaned and ready to use).
I bought it yesterday, marinated it and was getting ready to grill it when the hubster called from work saying he was in the mood for Chinese and to be ready by the time he gets home, so we could head out to our fav Chinese restaurant round the corner. I was back late after my swimming session and was in absolutely no mood to cook and had to drag myself off the couch to marinate the chicken. And then when I get all enthu about the outcome, there, I was asked to leave everything and get ready for Chinese grub.
If it was any other day I would have said yes to it before thinking twice, this time however, I didn't want to go out. But Ro convinced me to refrigerate it and use it the next day, in which case the marinade would have caught on better. Now I hate to admit it, but that was such a fabulous idea. It was perfect when I grilled it today. This recipe is very similar to the Grilled chicken wings- Indian style but without the sauce and such, but taste-wise it was a while lot different, somehow.
I hadn't planned on taking pics and blogging it, but it was too good to pass and in spite of it being a gloomy and foggy day, I stepped out on to my balcony, arranged everything and was getting ready to click away when the cleaning lady who was raking leaves called out, 'isnt it a bit too cold for a meal outside love' and I was embarrassed. I was shivering in my shorts and jumper and how on earth would I explain to her I was taking pics for my blog, and about lighting issues. I just shrugged and said I wanted to take a couple of pics and she went back to her job with a quizzical expression on her face. So I couldn't take too many pics, one because it was biting cold and two, the moms going to pick the kids up from the school behind my apt all started staring at this wacko woman in shorts, taking pics of food outside on her balcony.
Chicken wings- 500 gms (about 10 to 12 wings)
Yoghurt- 2 tbsp
Ginger paste- 1/2 tbsp
Garlic paste- 1/2 tbsp
Tomato paste- 1 tsp
Kashmiri chilli powder- 1 tsp
Cumin powder- 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder- 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder- 1/4 tsp
Garam masala- 1/4 tsp
Lime juice- 1/2 tsp
Dried fenugreek leaves/ kasoori methi- 1 tsp
Dried mint- 1/2 tsp (optional)
Mustard powder- 1/4 tsp
Tandoori masala- 1/2 tsp (optional- I use this just for the colour)
Wash and clean the chicken wings and place in a large bowl.
Whisk together all the remaining ingredients and give a quick taste test to see if there is enough salt and spice and adjust accordingly.
Pour over the chicken wings and toss it well it the marinade, making sure all the wings are evenly coated.
Cover using a cling film, or place in an air tight container to marinate over night in the refrigerator. If you are time constrained then a couple of hours should do.
When ready to grill, arrange the wings on a baking tray lined with aluminium foil. Retain the leftover marinade.
Preheat the grill/ broiler and place the tray on the middle rack and cook on one side for 7 minutes.
Remove, flip it over and grill for another 7 minutes.
Take it out and brush the wings with the left over marinade.
Place the tray back in and grill for a about 2 to 3 minutes, just to cook the masala.
You can check if its done by inserting a knife into the fleshy part and if juices run clear, you are good to go.
The wings will definitely be done in a matter of 15 minutes as your are grilling on high heat.
Let it rest for a couple of minutes on your kitchen counter before serving it as a starter or with a salad as a side.
Notes: Not a spicy preparation at all, so increase the chilli powder quantity as required.
I don't see the need to add oil in the marinade, but you can add about a tsp or so of oil/ ghee if you want
I also don't place the rack right below the grill, as it just chars the meat way too fast. So I keep it in the middle, but still grill on high heat, which makes for even cooking and a bit of charring as required.