Saturday, January 4, 2014

Tandoori Chicken Thighs

I'm a big fan of Cooking Light recipes. This one I've been holding onto since 2012...There are so many tandoori chicken recipes out there, and this may be one of the better ones that I've tried over the years. I think it might be because I actually took the time to let the chicken thighs marinate properly.

This is a great recipe for busy people. I took about 10 minutes to prep the marinade before I left to teach Spinning, and when I came back from class, my chicken was ready to grill. Magic...

On a side note, I really hate chicken thighs. They are 500 times greasier than chicken breast. I suppose I could have substituted chicken breasts, but chicken thighs really are A LOT cheaper. In fact, cooking light says that this recipe costs $9.85 to serve 4 people. And the serving size is accurate. We've got about 2 servings left over after BF and I chowed down.

The chicken turned out very good...boyfriend approved in fact (and he HATES how greasy chicken thighs are...). But I had one issue with this recipe. My yogurt marinade immediately burned to my grill pan, sticking the chicken to the pan. I preheated my grill for about 15 minutes - I grilled the veggies before the meat. And I put oil in the pan.

 I supposed I could have avoided this by wiping the majority of the marinade off of the meat before grilling it. But that sounds counter-intuitive. Why would you want to wipe it off? What good is that?

  • 1 cup plain 2% reduced-fat Greek yogurt 
  • 1/4 cup grated onion 
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons grated peeled fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs 
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil 
Combine the first 7 ingredients (through garlic) in a bowl and stir it up. Scrape the yogurt mixture into a gallon-sized zip-loc bag. Add the chicken  to the yogurt mixture and seal. Marinate in the fridge for 2 hours....go to spinning class.

Come back from spinning, and take the chicken out of the bag. Sprinkle both sides of chicken evenly with salt. Preheat your grill pan to medium-high heat.

Grill your veggies before your meat. 

Brush the grill with oil. Arrange chicken on grill rack. Brush grill rack with a little oil. Arrange chicken on grill rack. Grill about 6 minutes each side, until done.

* You can also broil tandoori chicken...that turns out nicely and probably would have prevented my marinade burning issues as well.

Fun Fact: The name "tandoori chicken" comes from "tandoor", the name of the cylindrical clay oven used to make it in India. The tandoor is associated with the Punjab region of India, and became popular when the Punjabi people re-setted in Delhi in 1947 with the partition of India - when Britain lost control of the "Indian Empire" and basically divided into India and Pakistan

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