Whenever I drive through any national highways, I always make it a point to take a short break in some dhaba to enjoy rustic, flavorful, fresh food. One such stop over had me taste spicy, aromatic sizzling tandoori chicken tikka in green paste. In India, we have different versions of these chicken tikkas, some call it Hariyali chicken tikka, some change the flavor and name it Pudina chicken tikka and in hotels we sometime decorate our menus with fancy names and name it as Pahadi (mountains) chicken kebab. The fact is the recipe is very simple and flavorful and we can easily make this chicken tikkas in our home kitchen on a grill-pan or in an OTG oven.
- Chicken leg/ breast boneless 250 gm
- Lemon juice 1/2 tsp
- Black salt 1 tsp
- Ginger-garlic-green chili paste (use all three in same ratio) 1 tbsp
- Coriander-mint chutney (make paste with as less water as possible) 1 tbsp
- Green food colour 1tsp or Palak paste (with less water to make paste) 1 tbsp
- Garam masala 1/2 tsp
- Jeera / Cumin powder 1/2 tsp
- Corriander powder 1/2 tsp
- Hung curd (hang curd in a muslin cloth overnight) 2 tbsp
- Corn flour 1 tsp (optional)
- Sunflower oil 2 tbsp
- Clean, wash and pat dry the chicken with a clean cloth.
- Marinate the chicken with lemon juice, black salt, ginger-garlic-chilly paste and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Sprinkle all the spices, mint-coriander paste and marinate it well.
- Add the hung curd and marinate it lightly till the yoghurt coats the chicken.
- Add the cornflour and mix well. It will tighten the marinade well.
- Pour 1tbsp oil over and mix it thoroughly.
- Refrigerate the chicken for 2-3 hours.
- Skewer the chicken and cook in tandoor/ OTG oven or alternatively you can heat a grill-pan with little oil and pan grill the chicken on slow heat to cook it well but not spoil the green colour.
- The tip for cooking a green chicken tikka is that Chlorophyll present in the green leaves which gives the bright green colour . It is often destroyed by adding acids to them extra amount. Prolonged cooking or overcooking also causes bright green vegetables to turn a drab olive green. So the cooking heat has to be regulated from medium to high and cooking has to stop as soon as the chicken tikka is well cooked to be served and eaten.
- As soon as the chicken is cooked sprinkle chat masala and lime juice and serve with naan or roti.