Butter Chicken, or ‘Murgh Makhani’, is an Indian dish, possibly originating in the Punjab that has become widely popular as a standard on the menu in Indian restaurants around the world. Essentially, it consists of chicken in spiced sauce with tomato and cream but there are many variations on the basic idea. The chicken can be bone-in or boneless and the sauce may be made using tomato puree or either fresh or canned tomatoes. I have had many, many versions of this in restaurants all over the place but the best I can recall was one I had in Vancouver about 6 or 7 years ago. That version used fresh tomatoes and is the version I want to try and reproduce for this post.
Some recipes use fresh chicken, either light or dark meat, but leftover Tandoori chicken is supposed to be more traditional. There is a story to the effect that the dish originated when a chef in Delhi had to come up with a chicken dish on very short notice and threw some Tandoori chicken pieces into a sauce with tomato and cream to the delight of his customers. Personally, I tend to take such stories with a grain of salt as there are similar versions about dozens of other dishes, but I do think that using leftover Tandoori chicken makes for a superior result. For a recent ‘Foodstuffs’ post on two different Tandoori Masalas, I cooked up three batches of Tandoori chicken, two to test the Masalas, and then an extra one to use for this experiment… Continue reading “Experiment: Indian Butter Chicken – Murgh Makhani”