Introduction: When it comes to Indian cuisine, one dish that consistently steals the spotlight is Tandoori Chicken. The combination of succulent chicken marinated in a flavorful blend of spices and cooked to perfection in a tandoor oven is nothing short of a culinary masterpiece. Today, we’ll delve into the art of creating Tandoori Chicken Skewers with a luscious Yogurt Sauce that’s sure to transport your taste buds straight to the streets of India.
Historical Context: Tandoori chicken has deep roots in the Indian subcontinent, dating back centuries. The word “tandoor” refers to a clay oven used in traditional Indian cooking. The technique of cooking in a tandoor involves marinating meat or vegetables in a yogurt-based mixture with an array of aromatic spices, resulting in tender and smoky dishes.
1. Marinating the Chicken:
- In a mixing bowl, combine the plain yogurt, lemon juice, vegetable oil, ground cumin, ground coriander, ground turmeric, paprika, garam masala, ground cinnamon, ground cayenne pepper, minced garlic, and grated ginger. Season with salt and black pepper to taste.
- Place the chicken cubes into a zip-top plastic bag or airtight container.
- Pour the yogurt marinade over the chicken, ensuring all pieces are well-coated.
- Seal the bag or container and refrigerate for at least 2-4 hours, or for the best flavor, marinate overnight.
2. Preparing the Yogurt Sauce:
- In a separate bowl, combine the plain yogurt, finely grated cucumber, fresh cilantro, fresh mint leaves, minced garlic, and ground cumin.
- Season the sauce with salt, black pepper, and lemon juice to taste.
- Mix well and refrigerate until ready to serve.
3. Skewering and Grilling:
- Preheat your grill or grill pan to medium-high heat.
- While the grill is heating, remove the chicken from the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature for about 20 minutes.
- Thread the marinated chicken cubes onto the soaked wooden skewers.
- Brush the grill grates with a bit of oil to prevent sticking.
- Place the chicken skewers on the grill and cook for 5-7 minutes per side, or until the chicken is cooked through and has a nice char.
- Baste the skewers with any remaining marinade during grilling.
- Transfer the Tandoori Chicken Skewers to a serving platter.
- Serve hot with the prepared Yogurt Sauce on the side.
- Garnish with extra chopped cilantro and mint, if desired.
- Dive into the smoky, flavorful goodness of these Tandoori Chicken Skewers. Dip them generously into the refreshing Yogurt Sauce to balance the heat from the spices.
There you have it – a mouthwatering recipe for Tandoori Chicken Skewers with Yogurt Sauce that brings the flavors of India right to your home. Enjoy this classic dish that has stood the test of time and continues to delight palates around the world.