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Wednesday 21 May 2014

"Almost Perfect" Butter Chicken

My family and I absolutely loves Butter Chicken!  Whenever I am back to Auckland for visit, Butter Chicken is a must for me to indulge into.

I have in fact cooked few versions/recipes of Butter Chicken but non of those are of the similar taste that I have tasted to that "Shamiana"or "Masala" restaurant Butter Chicken.  Either it was too tangy in the sauce or it doesn't have that herbs in taste.

I have almost 5 or 6 recipes I have bookmarked previously but wasn't ready to try it out.  Yes, I did alot of google searching, even go to the extend of studying one recipe comparing with another what herbs and spices to go into it.  Until one day I searched in the youtube and saw this video and it just clicked to me that this is just the right one.  

Well, one of the ingredients is "dry fenugreek leaves" which I have doubted whether I can find it here.  I tried searching at the local hypermarkets here and no... they don't have it.   Going to the Indian grocery spice shops  one shop after another and no....they don't have.  So, I thought maybe I go ask at the wet market to see whether they have the fresh fenugreek leaves (daun halba).  Oh no...they don't have too and some they don't even know what I am talking about.  And one young Indian lady just shove me the curry leaves instead!

Well, one of the weekend, I went to the city looking for it at the Indian shops again.  I went straight to the worker and asked "Do you have kasuri methi?"  He just went to one of the corner and gives me a pack of it.  You wouldn't believe it as I wanted to jump up high with joy when I finally found what I want!!

Cooking Indian food is not my forte, but butter chicken is my favourite so I will try and try and try to achieve that butter chicken taste that I had wanted;  just like "Shamiana" butter chicken!

Recipe inspired from Vahrehvah with changes

500g boneless & skinless chicken thigh, cut into long strips
1 sprig coriander leaves
50g butter
80ml cream (cooking cream or heavy cream or whipping cream)
1 tsp tomato ketchup (optional)

1 tsp ginger garlic paste 
½ tsp chilli powder
½ tbsp coriander powder
1 tsp salt 

2 tbsp oil
1 medium size onion
400g tomato
1 green chilli
6 pieces cashew nuts
1 tsp ginger garlic paste
½ tsp chilli powder
1 tsp cumin seeds
½ tbsp coriander powder
2 tsp dry fenugreek leaves (Kasuri Methi), lightly crushed
1/4 - 1/3 cup water
2 tsp sugar
Salt to taste


Marinade the chicken pieces with the marinade ingredients for 30 minutes.

In a large frying pan, heat the pan with the oil and lightly pan fry the chicken 10 minutes till fragrant.  Dish out the chicken pieces and set aside.

In the remaining oil in the frying pan, add in the cumin seeds, onion, ginger garlic paste, and some water in.  Give it a stir for a minute then add in the coriander powder, cashew nuts, chilli powder, fenugreek leaves. green chilli, and lastly the tomatoes.  Stir to combined all up and cover with a lid.  Cook for about 10 minutes till tomatoes are soften.

Remove from heat and let it cool slightly before pouring it into the blender.  Blend till all mashed up.

In a clean frying pan, add in the butter, pour in the juice from the chicken pieces, and the tomato puree mixture (I strained the tomato mixture before pouring into the pan), add in some water in,  salt to taste (I add about 1 tsp) and the sugar.  Let the sauce comes to a boil and add in the tomato ketchup (optional), 1/2 cup cream and stir to combine the sauce up.  Lastly add in the chicken pieces and let it simmer for about 10-15 minutes.

Dish up and serves with steamed rice or naan bread.

Do watch his video

*  The Butter chicken has the mild sweet in taste.
*  Those butter chicken serving in the restaurant/hotel has more vibrant in orangy colour as 
    they add artificial colouring in it. 

This is the dry fenugreek leaves ("Kasuri Methi")

Should anyone of you needed some of this dry fenugreek leaves, email me and I will send some to you.

I am submitting this post to Asian Food Fest - Indian Subcontinent hosted by