Make A Little Heat

I like to cook Indian food when I can. I find the process of creating a home-cooked meal to be unwinding.

Archie Panjabi

So before we start, let’s talk about the fact that there are hundreds of curry recipes out there. Thai, Northern Indian, Southern Indian, Afghan, the list goes on and on as to who has curry recipes. For this specifically, we’re going to a North Indian dish that has been a staple in my life for well over 20 years: Butter Chicken.

Before anyone comes for me: This is not a traditional Butter Chicken recipe. This is just me getting it to be as close to the beautiful rendition I have had in many restaurants. It does incorporate some ingredients that aren’t always easy to find though. Let’s get to it.

Butter Chicken

Feeds between 2 and 5 people. Depends on how many leftovers you leave.

Still no calorie counts, stop looking for them.

What You’ll Need:

  • Boneless Chicken Breasts (Either whole or cubed. For this particular one, I’ve left them whole)
  • Butter
  • Cooking Stock (I used veggie, but you can use chicken as well)
  • Cream (I actually used a gluten free oat milk and it came out just fine)
  • 1 Garlic Clove
  • Parsley
  • Garam Masala
  • Curry Powder
  • Cayenne Powder
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Paprika
  • Sugar
  • Olive Oil
  • and my favorite secret weapon: VomFass Senf Exotic BBQ

Ignore the garlic powder and go for an actual clove for this, but here’s what your other spices should look like.

We’re gonna start with our chicken. So whether you’ve cubed it or left it whole, you’ll prep it the same. Take a mixing bowl and toss in your chicken, a bit of olive oil, and your paprika, curry powder, garam masala, cayenne powder, salt and pepper. Mix that up and let it sit for a bit.

Heading to your stove, put it on a medium high heat with a couple of spoonfuls of butter. You can absolutely sub the butter for coconut butter or oil by the way. I’ve done that plenty of times, but Alex prefers regular butter. Get your butter melted down and toss in your minced garlic clove (oh yeah, mince that). You’ll want to cook your garlic until it starts browning. Once it’s brown, you’ll toss in that chicken to sear it. Feel free to add a little oil or even some extra butter to get that chicken nice and seared. It should look like this:

Once that’s done, remove the chicken and fold it in foil. It’s going to sit while we get our sauce ready. Do NOT drain your pan please. Add in your cooking stock. I’ll be honest, I’m not usually a measurement person but two cups should do it for now. You’ll stir in that stock and scrap the pieces your searing left behind.

Once it’s up, lower the heat to about a medium from medium high and add in your cream. Make sure to stir it in well and then add in some more butter. Your sauce will thicken as it cooks so don’t worry if it looks watery right now. Add in some more cayenne, garam masala, and curry powder. This is super important because if you don’t add in just a pinch of sugar, it will just be all spice. My butter chicken should have sweet promises of bliss in the beginning and the threat of toilet visits in the end.

Once your spices are mixed in, you’ll add about a half of your Exotic BBQ jar. It’ll spice it up and really give it some extra kick at the end. If you’re a weenie then skip adding in the extra cayenne and just use about a quarter of the jar. Just know that while I have no idea if you add in the half jar, I am still judging your inability to handle curry spice. Let that sauce sit for a bit, stirring occasionally. By now, you should be popping your rice or whatever your accompaniment into cook. I’ve had this over rice, potatoes, veggies, you really can’t go wrong. My favorite rice to have it over is Basmati but be warned, that shit’s expensive.

Your sauce should start to look like this:

It should be thick and creamy. If you’re noticing it’s still watery, add in some more cream and butter. Stir it in well and make sure the butter melts completely in your stirring. Once it’s about the thickness of a thicc Tomato Bisque, put your chicken back in and coat it with the sauce. Sprinkle with parsley. You’ll let your chicken and sauce sit for about another fifteen minutes on low heat.

Serve it over your rice/potatoes/veggies and have a glass of milk nearby. Enjoy the hell out of my take on Butter Chicken. It’s an absolute obsession in our house and has been requested multiple times by friends. OH don’t forget your naan!

Eat well, chickies.

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