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Tandoori Chicken

8 Nov Tandoori Chicken

Tandoori Chicken is high on my list of favorite Asian Indian dishes.  In fact, it is next in line after my all-time fave, Chicken Tikka Masala.  Tandoori chicken also a dish that traditionally requires a clay oven with the capacity to hit 900F.  Most of us will have to compromise and tweak things a bit in order to mimic the results of a high heat Tandoor oven.  What do to?

Tandoori Chicken

I was super excited to find a new Tandoori Chicken recipe that turns out phenomenal flavor, using just my humble little oven.  Though this isn’t an exact replica of what we’d get with a true Tandoor Oven chicken, it comes deliciously close…in fact, it’s tastier than many of the Tandoori Chicken versions we’ve eaten.  We all agreed that this recipe is a keeper; anytime the kids happily grub on a new recipe, it automatically goes into rotation!

Tandoori Chicken

This Tandoori Chicken is full of the rich and complex flavor that characterizes Asian Indian cuisine.  The simple cooking method results in chicken that is both tender and succulent.  If you allow the chicken to marinade at least 4 hours, the flavor will soak in beautifully.

Tandoori Chicken

My favorite thing about this Tandoori Chicken is how unbelievably easy it is to dish up!  The only part that takes planning ahead is the marinade time.  My other favorite thing is how healthy this yummy chicken is.  Packed with aromatic spices and whole yogurt, this mouth-watering chicken is absolutely guilt-free indulgence.  Serve with some fluffy Basmati rice and enjoy!


RECIPE (makes 16 drumsticks)


16 chicken legs/drumsticks (or 3 lbs other bone-in chicken pieces)
3 TB light olive oil
6 fresh garlic cloves, minced
1 TB ground ginger (or 2 TB freshly grated)
1 TB garam masala
1 1/2 TB smoked paprika
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp chili powder
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt (not sweetened)
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (about 2 limes) + extra wedges for garnish
2 1/2 tsp fine salt


Thoroughly dry chicken pieces.  Using a fork, deeply pierce each piece well, on all sides.  Set aside while you make the marinade.

Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat until shimmering.  Add garlic and cook 30 seconds.  Stir in ginger, garam masala, paprika, cumin, and chili powder.  Cook 30 seconds longer.  Transfer half of garlic mixture to a medium bowl, stir in the yogurt, and add 2 TB fresh lime juice.  Set medium bowl in fridge until ready to use.

In a large bowl, combine remaining garlic mixture, remaining lime juice, and salt.  “Loosen” mixture a bit with a couple dashes of olive oil.   Transfer pierced chicken to this large bowl and rub mixture onto chicken until all pieces are evenly coated.  Cover tightly and put in fridge for 2-4 hours.  Remove from fridge 1 hour before you’re ready to cook, so it has time to get close to room temp.

Adjust oven rack to upper middle position and heat to 325F.  Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with foil.

One at a time, work yogurt mixture into each chicken piece so that each piece is thickly coated, including underneath the skin.  Place chicken onto baking sheet and pour any remaining yogurt mixture over the chicken.  Roast chicken 20-25 minutes, depending on size of pieces (125-130 degrees if using meat thermometer.)

Remove chicken from oven, and adjust oven rack 6 inches from top heat broiler.  Return chicken to oven rack, and broil until chicken is lightly charred in spots, about 8-12 minutes.  Each oven is different and chicken pieces vary in size, so watch carefully to ensure chicken does not burn.

Transfer chicken to serving plate, tent loosely with foil and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.  Serve with Basmati rice and lime wedges.

By chewoutloud, adapted from Cooks Illustrated cookbook


This Tandoori Chicken recipe does not use red food coloring, which is often added for that reddish hue you may recognize with other Tandoori Chicken recipes.  Add food coloring if you must, but we prefer ours without it.  The flavor is phenomenal either way.

If desired, you can place chicken on a wire rack set on top of baking sheet, rather than directly on baking sheet.

Pan Grilled Flatbread, Like Naan

28 Sep Grilled Flatbread Like Naan

Weeks ago, I shared my favorite recipe for Chicken Tikka Masala, which was a huge hit with everyone who has tried it.  I’ve been so busy with fall that I just now realized this fabulous naan-like recipe has been waiting for its turn in the spotlight.  It very well could steal the show.

Grilled Flatbread Like Naan

Grilled Flatbread

Like the Chicken Tikka Masala, I have tried numerous times to create a decent flatbread that reminds me of the naan I’m so used to ordering from my favorite Indian eateries.  I even tried a popular “naan” recipe from allrecipes that looked promising.  Unfortunately, none of the recipes worked out well enough to write home about.  Until…you guessed it…now.

Grilled Flatbread Like Naan

This could well be the closest I’ll ever come to making Asian flatbread akin to Indian naan.  I’m very okay with that, given the happy results of this delicious flatbread.  In all truth, it’s extremely difficult (maybe next to impossible) for most home cooks to make authentic naan bread.  That is because most of us do not happen to have a home kitchen adorned with a traditional clay oven, which can get up to 900F.  At least, I don’t. 🙂

Grilled Flatbread Like Naan

Grilled Flatbread, similar to Naan

This scrumptious flatbread turned out soft, tender, and flavorful.   These came out with lots of nice, airy bubbles when they finished cooking.  I made the naughty mistake of covering them up with foil after cooking.  The warm condensation caused my big, pretty bubbles to flatten.  I share that tidbit so it won’t happen to you 😉   Regardless, none of my eaters cared or noticed – these were gobbled up as soon as they were released.

Overall, this tasty flatbread is a bit thicker and chewier than traditional naan, but it has made a worthy name for itself – every last bit of the bread was scraped up.  No leftovers means no experiments with reheating could be conducted this time.  Guess that’s a good thing.

Grilled Flatbread Like Naan

The only part that takes some time is, of course, the rising.  The rest of it is simple and straightforward.  You just have to stay patient while cooking them because, unless you have multiple cast iron skillets and uncanny hand-eye-speed coordination, you will probably be cooking them 1 at a time.

You’ll have to bat away all those hands trying to grab the bread before you’ve officially rung the dinner bell.  Good thing these cook up fast!  Do be sure to serve these up while still warm and fresh, so cook them up right before you’re ready to nosh.  Enjoy!

RECIPE (8 flatbreads)


1 package (2 1/4 tsp) instant yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt, plus more for sprinkling
1/4 cup (1 3/8 oz) whole wheat flour
2 1/2 cups (13 3/4 oz) bread flour, plus more for dusing
1 cup room temperature water
1/4 cup plain whole yogurt
1 TB olive oil, plus more for oiling bowl
4 TB melted butter for brushing on flatbreads
kosher salt to taste
garlic powder to taste


In a standing mixer, combine yeast, sugar, salt, whole wheat flour, and bread flour in the bowl of mixer.  Mix with paddle attachment until blended, about 15 seconds.  Add water, yogurt, and olive oil.  Mix on low until a shaggy dough forms, about 30 seconds.  Replace the paddle with the dough hook and knead the dough on medium speed until smooth and glossy, about 8 minutes.  Add more flour, only 1 TB at a time, if needed in order to get a dough that clears the sides of the bowl.  Be careful not to add too much dough.  It should still stick to the bottom of the bowl.   (If mixing by hand, knead dough until smooth and elastic, 12-15 minutes.)

Transfer dough ball to well oiled bowl.  Turn dough in bowl, so surfaces of dough are protected by oil.  Cover with plastic wrap and place in draft free, warm spot until dough has doubled in bulk.  About 1 hour.

Turn dough onto lightly floured surface.  If sticky, sprinkle lightly with flour.  Cut dough into 8 equal portions.  Roll each portion into round ball.  Roll or flatten each ball into a 4 in. circle, always keeping other dough balls covered while working. It helps to set them on wax or parchment paper, to prevent bottoms from sticking.  Let the 4-inch circles rest for 10 minutes.  One at a time, with lightly oiled rolling pin, roll each into 6 inch circle.  Keep others covered as you work on each one.

5-10 minutes before cooking, heat a heavy cast iron pan over medium high heat.  Working one at a time, gently lift a dough circle, stretch it about 1 inch larger, and place in skillet.  You can also press it into a better circle quickly right after you put it into the pan.  Cook until small bubbles appear on the surface of the dough, about 30 seconds.  Using a large, flat spatula, flip the bread and cook until bottom is speckled and deep golden brown in spots, about 2 minutes.  Flip bread over once more and cook until bottom is speckled and deep golden, 1-2 minutes.

Transfer bread to a wire rack and cool for a couple of minutes.  If desired, brush bread lightly with butter and lightly sprinkle with a bit of kosher salt and/or garlic powder to taste.  You can cover loosely in clean towel to serve warm.  If you do have leftovers, wrap bread tightly in foil and reheat at 300F for 15 minutes.

by chewoutloud, adapted from Baking Illustrated

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