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Why Is Butter Chicken The Most Famous Indian Recipe Outside India?

Butter Chicken or Murgh Makhani is one of the most delicious Indian chicken recipes loved across the globe! It is traditionally served with rice or different varieties of Indian flatbreads! It is loved for its simple cooking process, subtle spice balance, and rich flavor!

Origin of the famous “Butter Chicken”

This famous chicken curry recipe was invented by Kundan Lal Gujral in the 1950s! Mr.Gujral was working at “Mukhey da Dhaba” owned by Mokha Singh in Peshawar during the 1920s. Mr. Singh was an old gentleman, and his health began deteriorating as he began to age further. He eventually sold the shop to Mr. Gujral, who renamed it, Moti Mahal.

After India was partitioned in 1947, Mr. Gujral moved to Delhi, and along with him came Moti Mahal and Butter Chicken!

Moti Mahal began as a small eatery in India. Mr. Gujral began noticing that the Tandoor Chicken ( then prepared by placing the marinated chicken on large skewers and gently roasted on the flame) would dry out when unsold. As a clever businessman, he came up with the idea to retain the juiciness of the Tandoori Chicken by adding them to a basic gravy made of creamy tomato sauce along with spices and butter! Voila, the Butter Chicken was born!

Since then, this recipe has been savored by not only Indians but has gained international recognition for its subtle spicy, creamy, buttery, and sweet flavor! Today Moti Mahal has hundreds of franchisees across India!


So Why Is Butter Chicken Loved Across The World? 

Murgh Makhani was being called the Butter Chicken only around the 1970s! Today, we can find many variants of Butter Chicken as Chefs play around with the spices and ingredients to make it more flavorful and suitable for different palates.

  • The ingredients used are easily available in all parts of the world making it easy to prepare and enjoy!
  • It is a simple yet luxurious recipe that can be easily made for large gatherings and special occasions!
  • The tandoori chicken and the creamy sauce make it a versatile base for rice, flatbreads, Pizza topping, Rolls, etc!
  • It suits everyone’s palate as its flavors are balanced! (Not too spicy, Not too sweet! )
  • And who doesn’t love chicken?

Butter Chicken Recipe! 

You could use chicken drumsticks, wings, or breasts to prepare this recipe.

Start by marinating 1 pound of chicken in a mixture of 2 tablespoons of yogurt, a tablespoon of lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of red chili powder, 1 tablespoon of ginger garlic paste, and 1 tablespoon of garam masala, and half a tablespoon of salt.

Leave it for marinating overnight or for a minimum of 30 minutes. After marination, place smoking charcoal in a cup, along with a little butter, and cover the vessel for the chicken to absorb the smoky flavor.

Cook the chicken in the oven at 482 degrees Fahrenheit for over 8- 9 minutes or it can be pan-fried, roasted, or grilled too.

To prepare the curry base you will need 1 pound of tomatoes, ¼ pound unsalted butter, 1 ½ cups cream, 2 large onions, 1 cinnamon stick, 4 cloves, 2 tablespoons of oil, 4 garlic cloves, and 2 tablespoons of ginger paste, 1 tablespoon of cumin seeds, 2 red chilies and salt to taste.

Dice the tomatoes, onions, chilies and chop the Cilnatros finely. Heat the pan and put 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons of oil. Add the cumin seeds and the other spices. As they begin spluttering, add half of the diced onions, salt, and turmeric powder. As the onions turn soft, add the tomatoes, red chilies, and 1 tablespoon of garam masala powder.

Cook, it covered for 5 minutes until the tomatoes are fully mashed. Once it’s cooked, let it cool completely before being transferred to the blender or food processor to make a fine paste.

You could use 2 or 3 tablespoons of water to adjust the consistency of the tomato.

In another pan, add 1 tablespoon of butter, and fry the remaining diced onions. Add the tomato sauce, tandoori chicken, 2-3 tablespoons of finely chopped cilantro, and mix gently for every few minutes. After 5 minutes, add 2 tablespoons of sugar, 1 cup of cream, and stir for a few more minutes. Finally, pour 2 tablespoons of cream over the curry and the Butter Chicken is now ready!

You could serve it alongside Basmati rice, or any variety of rice or flatbread. Or you could simply serve it with your bread or buns! The smoked tandoori chicken soaked in the juices of tomato, cream, spices, and butter gives a glimpse of heaven on every bite!

A Buttery Chicken Recipe You Should Taste In Your Lifetime! 

Butter Chicken is one of the fastest evolving foods in the world. Today many restaurants across the world serve Butter Chicken, and it is a luxurious delicacy even common households can afford!

Today you can find Butter Chicken Tacos, Burgers, and Biryanis too! Unlike most Indian recipes, Butter Chicken is a spice friendly recipe that anyone can enjoy outside India, especially if you can’t handle the Indian spices yet

You could enjoy it as a stew or a topping to any of your favorite food bases! You could also try and create your own version of Butter Chicken!

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