Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Indian Dinner

I have been wanting to make tandoori chicken for a long time.  If finally made it for dinner tonight.  It was great. Definitely worth the wait.  I know that I can't make "true" tandoori chicken because I don't have a clay tandoori oven but this was truly yummy and easy to make.  I combined two recipes and the chicken definitely reminded me of the tandoori chicken I ate in an Indian restaurant.  I also made Basmati rice with carrots and golden raisins and a cucumber salad.  I was thinking of making a dessert out of the Naan bread but I didn't do it.  Naan is supposed to be good for breakfast dipped in egg sort of like French toast.  I definitely want to try that.

Tandoori Chicken
Serves 4
1 cup plain low fat yogurt
1-1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 tsp each paprika, garam masala and minced garlic
½ tsp chili powder
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp kosher salt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon tomato paste (optional)
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 5 oz each)
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro or mint

1.       Mix yogurt, ginger, paprika, garam masala, garlic, salt, chili powder, cumin, lemon juice and tomato past (if using) in a medium bowl until blended. 
2.       Scrape ¾ cup of yogurt mixture into a 1-gallon zip top bag.  Add chicken; seal bag and turn to coat.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.  Stir cilantro into remaining yogurt mixture and set aside for serving.
3.       Meanwhile, heat broiler and line a rimmed baking sheet with nonstick foil.
4.       Remove chicken from bag and place on prepared pan (discard bag and its contents).  Broil 10 to 12 minutes, turning once,, until cooked through.
5.       Place chicken on serving plates and drizzle with reserved yogurt mixture.

Steps in Cooking Basmati Rice

Stove-Top Method:
  1. Put the Basmati Rice into a medium saucepan. Rinse the Basmati rice with cold water thoroughly before cooking, because there is so much starch clinging to its grains. Wash two to three times with your hands.
  2. Drain the water again and then fill with fresh water The quantity of water should be either be :1 cup of rice and 1 1/2 cups water to boil if you want firm rice,Add the correct amount of water and cover with a tight-fitting lid. Bring to a boil.
  3. Make sure you cook it in a heavy pot and do not disturb the rice or take a peek while its in the middle of cooking.
  4. When it boils, lower the heat, simmer for 12 - 14 minutes before turning off the heat.
  5. Remove from heat and stand covered, for another 5-10 minutes. until you're ready to serve. The rice should have absorbed all the water and will just need fluffing up with a spoon.
Add a handful of carrots and golden raisins to the water before it boils.

Adrienne’s Cucumber Salad
Serves 8


4 cucumbers, thinly sliced
1 small white onion, thinly sliced
1 cup white vinegar
½ cup water
¾ cup  white sugar
1 tablespoon dried dill, or to taste


1.        Toss together the cucumbers and onions in a large bowl. 
2.       Combine the vinegar, water and sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat.  Bring to a boil and pour over the cucumber and onions.
3.       Stir in dill, cover and refrigerate until cold.  This salad can be served at room temperature but be sure to allow the cucumbers to marinate for at least 1 hour.