This Chicken Haldi Recipe is very Indian in spirit and uses a spice blend dominated by the warm notes of both Turmeric and Fenugreek Leaf.
The ‘Haldi’, in the name ‘Chicken Haldi’, is the Hindi word for Turmeric. The spices used in this baked Chicken dish are moderately complex, but they are dominated by the sweet, slightly pungent flavor of the bright yellow, dried Turmeric powder, along with the warm, maple-like notes of Kasoori Methi, or dried Fenugreek Leaf.
First, slash the flesh of the chicken legs in several places and then rub them well with lemon juice and salt. Let them sit for 20 or 30 minutes and then pat them dry of any excess juice. Now, rub Turmeric powder liberally over each leg, working it under the skin and into the slashes in the meat and then set aside.
Next, crush Cumin Seeds in a mortar until they are nicely broken up but not completely pulverized. Put them in a bowl and add Sugar, minced Garlic and minced Ginger. Mash with the back of a fork until the garlic and ginger form a smooth paste with the other ingredients and then add in the oil and fenugreek leaf. Stir and then rub this mixture over all the chicken leg, working it well into the slashes and under the skin as with the Turmeric.
Finally, put the legs on a wire rack on a baking sheet and pop into an oven pre-heated to 425 degrees. Depending on the size of the legs they will take about 45 minutes and you should turn them once or twice during the cooking time. I didn’t do it on this occasion, but you may want to give the kegs a few minutes under the broiler after they have cooked so that you can get some nice ‘grill’ crispiness and browning. Either way, let the legs rest for five minutes or so before serving. Here, I served the chicken with a side of spicy roasted potatoes and peppers, as well as a little Chili Pickle as a condiment.
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Chicken Haldi Recipe
- 1 dozen Chicken legs
- ¼ cup Lemon Juice
- 1 ½ tbsp. Salt
- 2 tbsp. Turmeric
- 1 tsp. Cumin Seed
- 1 tsp. Sugar
- 2 tbsp. minced Garlic
- 1 tbsp. minced Ginger
- 2 tbsp. dried Fenugreek Leaf Methi
- ¼ cup Vegetable Oil
- Slash the flesh of the chicken legs in several places, rub them well with the lemon juice and salt, and let them sit for 20 or 30 minutes
- Pat the legs dry, then rub the turmeric liberally over each leg, working it under the skin and into the slashes in the meat.
- Lightly crush the Cumin Seeds and add them to a bowl with the Sugar, Garlic and Ginger. Mash to a smooth paste and stir in the oil and Fenugreek Leaf.
- Rub the paste over the legs and work some under the skin and into the slashes in the meat.
- Bake the legs, on a wire rack over a baking pan, at 425 degrees for about 45 minutes, turning once or twice until nicely browned and cooked through.
- Let rest for 5 minutes before serving.