Barbecue is one of the most popular methods of cooking your meat. This is one cooking technique which is used all over the world, in a variety of avatars. Barbecue is prepared in different ways depending on where you are. Every country has some signature dishes it is famous for. India is famous for its tandoori kebabs. A tandoor is basically a clay oven, a kind of barbecue pit. Pieces of meat are threaded onto skewers and placed in the clay oven to slow cook, just like a normal charcoal grill. The meat is often rubbed with flavorful spices and then the cooked meat is served along with chutneys and onion. This method of barbecuing meat is unique to India but it has become popular all over the world in recent years.
Grilled chicken tikka is a dish made in a tandoor. The word tikka literally means small pieces or chunks. It comprises small, boneless and marinated pieces of chicken and vegetables threaded on skewers and flavored with a variety of spices. It can be eaten by itself or with some chutney. Onion rings and a little lemon are always served along with grilled chicken tikka. This dish is most often served as an appetizer. The following recipe is just one way to prepare chicken tikka and once you have mastered it, feel free to experiment and come up with your own version of this Indian delicacy.
This recipe is quite easy to prepare and even someone who has not cooked Indian food in the past will be able to execute this recipe to perfection. This recipe requires a little preparation in advance; the chicken must be marinated for a minimum of two hours. For best results, marinate the chicken for four to six hours before beginning to grill it. Once that is done, however, it should not take you more than half an hour to make this dish.
- 3 boneless chicken thighs or breasts
- Melted butter or refined oil of your choice
- Freshly squeezed lemon juice from 1 lemon
- 2 tablespoons garlic paste
- 1 cup fresh yogurt
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- 1 tablespoon grated ginger or ginger paste
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon each of salt and black pepper
- Coriander leaves for garnishing
First, thoroughly clean your chicken and chop it up into small pieces or cubes, make sure they can easily be threaded onto the skewers. Poke small holes into the chicken, this is done so the marinade can soak right through the meat. Put the chicken in a large bowl along with the lemon juice and keep it aside for the moment. In another bowl, mix the garlic paste, yogurt, turmeric, ginger, cumin, salt and black pepper together, making sure they combine well. Soak your chicken in this marinade for four to six hours before grilling.
When you are ready to start the process of grilling, preheat your grill to high and lightly drizzle with oil or butter. Skewer the marinated chunks of chicken and place the skewers over the flame. Baste the chicken with the oil or butter as it cooks. Cook each side until it turns dark brown and has grill marks on it. This should take about 5 to 6 minutes. Make sure to keep basting with the oil or butter. Once every side is cooked, transfer the chicken to plates, squeeze some lemon over it and garnish with coriander leaves.