Butter chicken has always been a comfort food close to my heart, the thick, rich sauce and yummy chunks of tender chicken. But let’s face the facts, the butter chicken from the takeaway store is NOT healthy, and the jar stuff that you make at home is usually full of preservatives, sugar and additives. Solution? Make your own butter chicken sauce from scratch! It’s not too hard, I did it myself yesterday, using a recipe from Women’s Health Magazine Australia and altering as necessary. And if you are short on time and want a quick option, make up a large batch of sauce in advance, then jar and freeze in serves and use whenever you feel like butter chicken! Simple and healthy. The sauce takes about an hour to make, then you just have to add in the chicken, plus stock and a bit of coconut milk if you so desire, cook until chicken is tender and voilà, from scratch butter chicken.
This recipe is actually healthy, gluten free, sugar free, dairy free, and if you substitute vegetables for chicken it could also be vegetarian/vegan. It is also packed full of great flavours and ingredients that are good for all kinds of ailments, such as turmeric – the super spice for inflammation and cancer, chilli – great for metabolism, ginger – all over good for colds and flus, coconut milk – full of important good fats and minerals. You can certainly enjoy this meal without feeling guilty.
From Scratch Butter Chicken
Sauce (for 4 serves)
600g sliced onion
10g ginger and garlic paste (I used fresh garlic and ginger powder)
300g sliced tomato
10g ground coriander (I used fresh, chopped)
Turmeric (I added extra, because it is a super-spice!)
Fresh chilli, to your liking of spiciness!
600g chicken breast, cut into chunks
15g chilli powder
6g ground turmeric
Salt, to taste
Oil – olive, grapeseed, coconut.
350ml chicken stock
Coconut milk (optional, helps take spicy edge off)
Garam masala powder (an Asian spice)
Fresh coriander leaves, to serve
1. First, coat chicken in chilli powder, turmeric and salt until coated. Leave to sit while you prepare sauce.
2. For sauce, saute onion until golden, then add cashews, ginger and garlic paste. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes.
3. Add sliced tomato, coriander, chilli and turmeric. Cook on low heat for 30 minutes, until soft and fragrant.
4. Once cooked remove from heat and once cooled, puree in blender or food processor. Separate out what you need to use and freeze any leftovers.
5. Heat oil over low flame, add chicken chunks, butter chicken sauce, chicken stock, garam masala and coconut milk. Cook for as long as possible, until chicken is cooked through and very tender.
6. Serve with on brown rice, quinoa, or if you’re like me, on baby spinach leaves to eliminate grains. Top with fresh coriander and enjoy!
Keep healthy, Erica xx
P.S. Sorry about no photo, I may have eaten it all before I remembered to get a photo! Next time I promise…