India - India's Makhan Murg (The Butter Chicken)

Updated: Mar 5, 2020

By Ansah Boateng

In the Motil Mahal hotel's kitchens in Delhi in the 1950's, the Butter chicken dish was born. It has now become one of India's well-known dishes.

Lots of restaurants around the world have different versions of it that are not traditional and authentic. So before you learn the traditional butter chicken and what it really look and taste like, you should first know how it shouldn't be. It should't be too sweet, and filled with colouring, it also shouldn't be full of tomato ketchups an raisins.

The Butter Chicken dish originates from Punjab, North India. its unique flavours come from adding to the gravy, yogurt, tomatoes, and dried fenureek.It can be made anyhow you want it, either hot or mild, making it suitable for most palates. Butter Chicken, commonly known as Makhani Murg, tastes even better with green salad, naan, and black lentils. We advice making the spices powdered from the beginning, because it gives the best results.

Ingredients Needed

First Marinade

2 and a quater pounds of boneless chicken

1 lime


1 teaspoon of red chili powder

Second Marinade

1 cup of fresh unsweetened yogurt

2 teaspoons of ground coriander

1 teaspoon of ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon of ground turmeric


3 tablespoons of vegetable oil

2 onions

2 teaspoons of garlic (blended)

1 teaspoon of ginger (blended)

1 can of chopped tomatoes

2 cups of chicken broth

2 tablespoons of dried kasuri methi

3 tablespoons of butter

Garnish with coriander leaves

Spice Powder

10 peppercorns

A cinnamon stick

2 bay leaves

10 almonds

Cardamom seeds (from 4 pods)

Preparation Method

Soak the Chicken in the Marinade for the First Time

- Add the chicken to a mix of lime juice, salt, and red chili powder in a big bowl.

- Cover and marinate for 1 hour.

Blend the Spice into Powder

- Heat a pan and slightly roast the peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon, almonds, and bay leaves until they darken a little. Let it cool down and put in the cardamom seeds.

- Grind into powder.

Soak the Chicken in a marinade for the Second Time

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