Chicken tikkas (chicken cubes marinated in yoghurt and Indian spices, and grilled) and vegetable skewers

IMG_2149

 

I’m a novice when it comes to outdoor grilling/barbeque, still learning the ropes, ever since we got our new outdoor gas grill. I experimented with a traditional Tandoori recipe, always wanted to do so the ‘real’ way with a ‘real’ grill at home! Nothing to beat the taste of charred meat, especially, when married with aromatic and delicious Indian spices, yum! We have grown up eating Tandoori food an umpteen number of times, so this is my take on a Tandoori classic. Alternatively, one can use an indoor gas grill or an oven.

I had some bell peppers and potatoes too, so decided to grill them on skewers alongside the chicken. And to complete our dinner platter, a serving of saffron infused Basmati brown rice with peas(I will add the recipe in another blog post)

Ingredients for the tikkas:

Skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into one inch cubes- 1lb.(about 500 grams)

For the marinade:
Thick whole-milk yoghurt – 1/2 cup
Kashmiri red chilli powder(or paprika) – 1 tsp.

Garam masala powder – 2 tsp.(my recipe given below, can use store-bought too)

Ginger/ garlic paste – 1 tsp.( grate 1 garlic clove and 1/2 inch piece fresh ginger)

Dried mango powder(amchoor) – 1/2 tsp. or fresh lemon juice, a tbsp.

Saffron threads, a pinch, soaked in a tsp. of milkIMG_2147
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste.
Canola oil or any vegetable oil, added with some garam masala powder, to brush the chicken and veggies, when they are on the grill.

Oil, to brush grill grateIMG_2145

For the veggies:
1 cup diced red bell pepper
1 cup diced green bell pepper
1 cup diced red onionIMG_2127
1 cup cherry tomatoesIMG_2144

A handful Padron peppers(optional).

1 cup diced potatoes(half cooked, just immerse them in simmering salted water for about  10 mins.).

Metal skewers. Can use bamboo skewers too, soak them in water for an hour before using them, so they don’t catch fire on the grill.

To prepare the chicken and veggie :

Whisk yoghurt with all the spices and ingredients, for the marinade. Marinate the chicken for at least 4 hours, or upto 8 hours, for all the flavours to marry. Put them into skewers once the grill is ready.

Similarly, put all the veggies on skewers.

Preheat a gas grill to medium. Brush grill grate with oil. Put the chicken skewers first, and grill for about 10-12 mins, turning once and occasionally basting with garam masala infused oil, during the last couple of minutes. Once done, transfer toyour waiting dinner platter!

The veggie skewers can be grilled for 5-6 mins, I like the veggies to still have a bite to them. (Do add salt tIMG_2148o the onions and peppers, before grilling them). Baste with oil too.

Arrange on platter, squeeze some lemon juice and hog!

 

For this recipe, I make my own garam masala powder at home, since I use it very often in my dishes. Dry roast the following spice – 2 tbsp. coriander seeds, 1 tbsp. cumin seeds, 1 black cardamom, 4IMG_2122-5 green cardamoms, 4 cloves, 8-10 peppercorns, 1 inch piece cinnamon stick, mace (it is a spice similar to nutmeg, it is the dried lace-like covering of nutmeg). Be careful not to burn spices, just a couple of minutes on medium heat. When cool, grind in a spice grinder (i use a small coffee bean grinder). Store in an airtight jar. Can be used in a variety of Indian dishes. It is also easily available at any Indian grocery store.

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