There are many ways of making a masala chicken. These days there so many brands of meat and chicken masalas being sold in the market. For those who are not sure, “masala” is a blend of ground spices for cooking curries and other spicy food. In this particular recipe, the masala is uniquely my Amma’s. I am using 15 almonds. The almonds give a lovely thick and rich taste to the dish. You can also substitute them with cashew nuts, but almonds are preferable. This is a dry dish and can be eaten with breads and also served with rice. I have removed the skin of the chicken so that the full flavor of Q.B.B. ghee mingles with the whole spices and gives a warm finishing aroma to the dish. The chicken can be cut into bigger or smaller pieces according to your wish.
15 blanched almonds
5 cm ginger
100 ml yoghurt
200 ml water
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
2 tablespoons chillie powder
2 tablespoons coriander powder
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon salt
1 kg chicken pieces, skinned and cut into small pieces
2 tablespoons Q.B.B. ghee
2 X 2-cm cinnamon sticks
1 star anise
2 dried bay leaves
4 onions, sliced thinly
2 green chillies, slit lengthwise
3 tomatoes, thinly sliced
250 ml water
50 g mint leaves, finely chopped
50 g coriander leaves, finely chopped
Salt to taste
1 Place the first 6 ingredients in a blender and process until smooth
2 Pour into a bowl. Add in the chillie powder, coriander powder, garam masala and salt and combine well to make it into a paste.
3 Marinate the chicken pieces in the above blended ingredients for 1 hour or more.
4 Heat Q.B.B. ghee and fry the cinnamon sticks, cardamoms and cloves until very aromatic.
5 Add in the bay leaves, onion slices and green chillies and sauté over medium heat till the onion slices turn golden brown.
6 Add in the tomatoes and sauté till the tomatoes become very soft.
7 Add in the rest of the ingredients; adjust salt level and cook till the chicken is tender and the gravy is very thick enough that it coats the pieces of the chicken.