Butter Chicken/Murg Makhani/Indian Butter Chicken

Butter Chicken/Murg Makhani/Indian Butter Chicken

By NamakShamak
  • Serves: 3 - 5
  • Prep Time: 30 Minute
  • Cooking: 40 Minute
  • Calories:

We all grew up enjoying Butter Chicken or Murgh Makhani ,but only on special occassions in restaurants. And as children ,we believed that the restaurant cooks had some magical trick to cook some of those yummy dishes, that could only be had in restaurant. That was the case in 80s and early 90s, until ,masterchef Sanjeev Kapoor, through his popular cookery chow “Khana Khazana”, showed us all that a Paneer masala, Butter Chicken can also me made at home! Years later, this popular dish found international acclaim…and justified, given the smooth texture and flexibility with spices. Interestingly, this recipe was accidentally invented in a restaurant in Delhi the “Moti Mahal”,where it was a normal practice to use the leftover marinade for tandoori chicken mixed with tomato paste to make a creamy gravy using butter and cream. Boneless pieces of roasted tandoori chicken was added to the gravy. This became an instant hit in Delhi , and soon travelled across the country. Indians, typically Punjabi’s travelled across the world, taking with them their favourite recipe. The recipe however varies with restaurants serving them, and so does the taste. Ground cashewnuts, or Khoya ( dried milk) is sometimes used. Homemade recipes vary too. But the authentic taste comes with a balance in spices and cream in the tomato gravy. Over the years, I have perfected a fool proof  recipe and passed on to relatives and friends. I have mixed a tsp of cashew paste to the cream , to stabilise it. Sometimes the cream added at later stage splits, resulting in an uneven texture. Also, I have used a small onion along with tomatoes for the gravy for a more thick and smooth consistency. Sauteed onions and tomatoes with some cashews when blended reduce the frying time ,when making the gravy. All these simple modifications make a perfect restaurant style Butter Chicken , that goes perfect with Rotis or Naan.  



  1. For Chicken Tandoori/Tikka: Mix all the ingredients for the tikka and the chicken and marinate for atleast 1 hour,preferrably overnight. Roast the chicken pieces in preheated oven 200 deg C . Or grill them on open grill or pan using little oil till d
  2. Heat 1 tsp oil in a pan and fry the onions ,whole garam masala,tomatoes and cashews till pulpy. Cool and grind to a fine paste.
  3. Heat remaining oil and a tsp butter in a non stick vessel and fry the ground paste on a medium flame,stirring to prevent sticking.Once the oil starts seperating, add garam masala and fry for a min. Add 1/2 Cup water and bring it to a boil. Add salt,h
  4. Transfer in a bowl, garnish with chopped coriander and butter. Add a dab of cream and serve with hot rotis or naans.

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