When I say Tandoori, what I mean is ‘English styleee tandoori’ i.e. spiced red chicken that is never going to see even a whiff of a tandoor oven. However, I don’t know many people who’d refuse a skewer of my, two day marinated, lime infused tandoori chicken and our kids just love it.
This is my family recipe and it includes, oh horror, red food colouring! Tandoori chicken is just not as fun without it. The key to this dish is to marinate the chicken for two whole days, no less, or the flavours will be unable to reach their peak of perfection.
We like to eat it wrapped in flat bread which I make on the Aga.
How people can wax lyrical over such an imprecise and temperamental fusty old hunk of iron is beyond my comprehension but it makes bloody good flat bread. Rise some dough, roll it out, slap it on the hotplate and voila – great bread. A tomato and marjarom salsa and a crisp salad finishes this off, with a dressing made from herbs from the garden.
1 kilo/2lbs chicken breast, cut into strips
1 juicy lemon
1/2 medium onion, peeled & quartered
3 cloves garlic, peeled
3-5cm fresh ginger, peeled & quartered
500g plain Greek yoghurt
3 tsp garam masala, my mix –
- 1/2tsp ground coriander
- 1/2tsp ground cumin
- 1/2tsp ground fenugreek
- 1/2tsp cracked black pepper
- 1/2tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2tsp salt
- 1 blade mace
- a grind of nutmeg
1tsp red food colouring
8 Wedges of lime
Cut the chicken breast into strips.
Squeeze the lemon and mix with the masala spices. Pour over the chicken, making sure every piece is coated.
Now chop the onion, garlic and ginger and pound to a paste with a pestle and mortar or use a food processor. Add the turmeric and Greek yoghurt. Now add the spiced chicken and mix well. Leave to marinate in the fridge for 48 hours.
When ready, thread the chicken pieces onto barbecue skewers. I like to pierce each piece of chicken twice so that the strip forms a C shape on the skewer, I then push it down and thread another. Place on the barbecue and cook through, turning frequently. Remove from the heat and finish them off with a squeeze of fresh lime or lemon.
Green Goddess Dressing
5 tbsp Home made or Hellmann’s mayonnaise
3 spring onions, chopped finely
5 tbsp flat leaf parsleychopped finely
2 tbsp chives, chopped finely
2 tbsp herbs from the garden, chopped finely
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 anchovy filled (oil packed) chopped finely
Black pepper a pinch of Maldon sea salt
Shake everything together in a jar and pour over crisp salad.