Friday, June 19, 2009

The Butter Chicken Blues

After a long days work, Indian delivery from our favourite local restaurant seemed like the perfect comfort food. We've been ordered from Everest on Lakeshore for years now. Delivery is relatively quick, the food always arrives steaming hot, and I've got a particular soft spot for their butter chicken. I called the manager to ask about the 'peanut situation. '

I had no idea, but Indian food is chock full of nuts; a large majority of the meat dishes include cashew paste, which is used as a sauce thickener. Even though the manager graciously offered to cook the dishes fresh, without the paste, we declined to order. The opportunity for cross contamination in a kitchen where nuts are commonly used seems high. Even though DJ was already in bed and wouldn't be partaking, we decided from the onset that we would maintain a strictly peanut/nut free household, so even foods with trace amounts of allergen are considered off-limits. Maybe we're being overly cautious, but for us, it's the strategy that we're most comfortable with for now. I'm going to miss Everest. In the meantime, I'm going to check out the labels on some of the prepared Indian sauces available so I can make my own Indian food at home.

1 comment:

  1. This is how I make Butter(makhni) chicken (NUT FREE)


    1.5 lbs Chicken Pieces
    Lemon juice 1 tablespoon
    Red chilli powder 1 teaspoon
    Salt to taste
    Butter 2 tablespoons

    Yogurt 1 cup
    Salt to taste
    Garlic paste 1/2 teaspoon
    Garam masala powder 1/2 teaspoon
    red chilli powder 1 teaspoon
    Ginger paste 2 tablespoons
    Lemon juice 2 tablespoons
    oil 2 tablespoons

    Butter 1/2 tablespoon
    Ginger paste 1 tablespoon
    Green chillies, chopped 4-5
    Red chilli powder 1 tablespoon
    Salt to taste
    Garlic paste 1 tablespoon
    Tomato puree 1.5 cups
    Garam masala powder 1/2 teaspoon
    Cream 1 cup


    Make incisions with a sharp knife on breast and leg pieces of the chicken.

    Apply a mixture of red chilli powder, lemon juice and salt to the chicken and set aside for half an hour.

    Mix yogurt, red chilli powder, salt, ginger-garlic paste, lemon juice, garam masala powder and oil.

    Apply this marinade to the chicken pieces and refrigerate for three to four hours.

    Put the chicken onto a skewer and cook in a preheated oven (375°C) for ten to twelve minutes or until almost done. Baste it with butter and cook for another two minutes. Remove and set aside.

    Heat butter in a pan. Sauté for two minutes, ginger-garlic paste and chopped green chillies.

    Add tomato puree, red chilli powder, garam masala powder, salt and one cup of water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for ten minutes.

    Add cooked tandoori chicken pieces. Simmer for five minutes and then add fresh cream.

    I've used this recipe as a guideline. I have adjusted the measurements & ingredients to my liking (and availability). So hope you enjoy it!