Murg Makhani (Butter Chicken Masala)

This is one delicious Butter Chicken Masala or Murg Makhani.  The best of the numerous types I’ve experimented. None of them came this close to the taste you get at a nice yummy North Indian Restaurant. I picked up the recipe from here . It’s a link from Facebook. And if you’re lazy to click on the link…then I make life easier for you (ya, I’m nice!)

Please note : the pic does absolutely no justice to its taste. My husband and son were in no mood to wait while I lavishly clicked snaps because they had tasted a little bit of the gravy while serving and just couldn’t wait to eat it with hot hot parathas. So all I could manage before they attacked, was a snap using my Blackberry and didn’t even bother to switch on all the lights of the room. :-).

And oh yea, do NOT get frightened by the number of ingredients (they are all what we always have in our pantry) and by the process ( it’s really simple). I can guarantee you’ll make this again and again.
Butter Chicken


To Marinate

  • 1kg – skinless, boneless chicken – cubed
  • 1/2 cup yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • salt to taste

For the sauce

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp whole garam masala (2 cardamom, 1 bayleaf, 2-3 cloves, 1 inch cinnamon stick, 3-4 peppercorns)
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste
  • 1 tbsp chopped garlic
  • 1 tbsp chopped green chillies
  • 2 tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 cups tomato puree
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric power
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • salt to taste
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoon honey
  • 10 cashewnuts (it’s optional. I would recommend add b’cos it makes the gravy thick. But grind it in a food processor first.)
  • 10 raisins (optional… I didn’t add any)
  • 1 small cup fresh cream


To Marinate: Place chicken in a glass dish or bowl with everything under the ‘To marinate’ section. Prick chicken with the fork, toss well and refrigerate to marinate for 1 hour.

1. Heat sufficient oil in a non stick saucepan and stir fry the marinated chicken along with the marinade until it is dry. This might take a few minutes so keep checking if it sticks to the bottom of the pan.

2. Once it is done, place on paper towels to drain any excess oil.

3. To Make Sauce: Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat and saute onions till golden brown.

4. Stir in whole garam masala. When masala begins to crackle, mix in ginger paste, chopped garlic and green chillies.

5. Saute until tender, then stir in tomatoes, tomato puree, chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, salt and water.

6. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring in honey (the secret ingredient), ground cashews and raisins (if you are adding).

7. Mix chicken in sauce mixture. Continue cooking for another 15 minutes, or until chicken is done.

8. Stir in fresh cream just before serving.

9. Garnish with coriander leaves.


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