Would you believe me if I told you that you don’t need hours to make butter chicken masala? And that I made this restaurant style butter chicken in less than an hour? Because when you come back home at 7 after a long day at work, you don’t have more than an hour to make dinner!
I have a confession to make. Before I moved to Bangalore, I wasn’t good at making Indian food. Yes I could do regular every dishes (like chatpate aloo and dal) but I had never tried my hand at the more complex, restaurant style food (read: Butter Chicken).
A month in Bangalore and I realised that if you want good Butter Chicken, you gotta learn how to make it. Apart from a few, restaurants in Bangalore just don’t do good North Indian food. Bangalore peeps, don’t beat me up on this, but it’s true.
When I started craving Butter Chicken I figured that I had to learn how to make it myself.
But like everything else on this blog, this is a cheats version. And nobody will be able to tell. The experts will scoff and laugh. But they won’t be able to tell it apart from the stuff you get at the restaurant!
I didn’t spend hours marinating the chicken, nor did I add oodles of butter or cream and there was no sauteeing the masala slowly either. All of it took me an hour + an extra ten minutes for butter naan and rice.
And that’s what we want, don’t we? Quick, delicious and creamy butter chicken but without all the hard work!
And if you have my Makhani gravy ready in the freezer, you can even do this in under 30 minutes! But I didn’t have any left, and you probably don’t either, so I went the whole hog.
Before you go away to try this out, let’s just get into a few details:
– I’ve added quite a few cashews to the gravy, which is not super traditional but I think it adds some major creaminess to the sauce, which also eliminates the need to dump cups of cream into it!
– I also recommend bone-in chicken because we are only marinating it for 15-20 minutes, and boneless chicken may become dry and rubbery. If you do insist on using boneless chicken, make sure you use ‘chicken thighs’ ONLY! They will remain juicy and flavorful!
– Try not to skip the Kasuri Methi because in my opinion, that is what sort of gives the chicken that restaurant style taste and adds a bit of smokiness to it which I loooooooove! A little goes a long way! If you absolutely don’t have access to it, you can substitute it with 2 tablespoons chopped Cilantro.
– This chicken will be orange-ish in colour which is the real colour of Butter Chicken. Anybody who is passing off a red gravy as butter chicken is just adding artificial colouring, stuff that you should stay away from.