Monday, August 6, 2012

Tandoori-Spiced Chicken Thighs

I never tried Indian food until after I started college. When I finally had it, I felt wronged. "Culinarily"-deprived. (I can't find a better phrase for it, so why not make one up?). I could not believe all of the delicious foods I had been missing out on. For years. Years! Naan, alone, was enough to make me feel like I never needed another cuisine.

A few more years of dining hall meal plans, and then I was out on my own. Off to fend for myself in the kitchen. It took me so long before I approached Indian recipes.

B's sister gifted him/us a cookbook, and as excited as I was, the ingredient lists felt overwhelming. Then, one fortunately lazy afternoon, I took a peek at B's mom's Gourmet Cookbook and fell upon a recipe for Tandoori Chicken Thighs. I immediately swooned for the bright red, bone-in, chicken that arrives at your table sizzling on a skillet.

It had to be done.

A couple of surprises when making this recipe. As you can see, the chicken isn't bright red! Turns out this recipe lacks the red spices (cayenne, kashmiri red chili powder, etc) that result in the typical red hue. I assume that Gourmet was looking for a more mild-spiced version to appeal to a variety of pallets. (They forgot about folks like me, the spicier the better!)

The next surprise, the spices were easy to come by. Unlike cardamom, which I can NEVER find. But that's a different story.

Tandoori Spiced Chicken Thighs
adapted from The Gourmet Cookbook
Serves 5-6


1 Tablespoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
6 oz plain Greek yogurt
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon turmeric
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs

 In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the Greek yogurt with the lemon juice and all of the spices.

Trim the excess fat off the chicken thighs and stir into the yogurt mixture, making sure to coat all sides of the chicken.

Put chicken and spiced-yogurt mixture into a large heavy-duty sized plastic seal-able bag. Close bag tightly and ensure that chicken is well-coated. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, and up to 12 hours. (Mine marinated overnight.)

Preheat broiler, set on high. Line the broiler pan with foil and spread out chicken in a single layer. Broil chicken, about 5-6 inches from the flame, until they are cooked through (about 16 - 20 minutes). Make sure to turn once during the cook time. (Depending on the size of your pan, you may have to cook the chicken thighs in multiple batches)

Serve with basmati rice, and/or your other favorite sides, and enjoy!

A super special thanks to Lindy at Whiskful Thinking for thinking of me! I love how much you've committed to your baking! I hope we cross paths again, soon!

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