Sunday, 3 November 2013

Balti Chicken

Do you have idea of Balti Cuisine? I don't till date, though I found this name in many of the restaurant menu list but never thought of the origin of this cooking method. Some other day, while browsing through Indrani's Blog 'Recipe Junction' , to decide what to cook from her blog for the ongoing 'Know your Kolkata Food Bloggers' event, this name caught my fancy. Indrani detailed it very beautifully in her blog, I am just copying some part of it for your reference.

What is Balti Cuisine :
'Balti' translates literally as cooking bucket, and the balti dish, known as a karai, is a two handled pan like a small, shallow wok in which the dish is both cooked and served. This cuisine is greatly influenced by the neighbouring cuisines of India, China, Iran and Afghanistan. The cooking style is quick, like a stir fry, and assembled straight in the pot, thereby retaining the freshness of the ingredients and the heat. Balti is traditionally served sizzling with a large naan bread which is used to scoop up this tasty dish. Balti cuisine includes from non-veg. Chicken, goat, lamb, prawn dishes till vegetarian potato, Aubergine, courgette dishes flavoured with whole Indian spices and fresh herbs. 
All said and done, let's now concentrate on the recipe. I have followed Indrani's recipe to the 'T', so I hope, Indrani won't mind, if the content is a copy of hers. ;-)


  • Chicken - 1 kg
  • Onion - 3
  • Tomato - 3
  • Ginger Paste - 1 tbsp.
  • Garlic Paste - 1 tbsp.
  • Green Chilli - 5
  • Kashmiri Chilli Powder - 1 tsp
  • Whole Garam Masala
  • Whole Black Pepper
  • Jeera - 1 tsp
  • Curd - 3 tbsp.
  • Lemon Juice - 1 tbsp.
  • Fresh Coriander - a handful
  • Salt, Turmeric
  • Mustard Oil
 Marinate the chicken pieces with 1 tsp. turmeric powder, 2 tsp. salt and 1 tblsp. oil. Keep aside for 1/2 - 1 hour. Slice the onions thinly and cut the tomatoes lengthwise.
 Heat oil in a karahi(preferably) or in a wide frying pan or wok. Add the onions and fry till they are golden brown. Add the tomatoes and stir fry well in medium-high flame.

Add all the whole spices when tomatoes are half done. Mix well with onion-tomato paste, also add ginger and garlic paste,  turmeric and chilli powder and little salt. Lower the heat and stir-fry for 3-4 minutes.

Then add the marinated chicken pieces few at a time, stir-fry for another 7-8 minutes or till the chicken pieces are almost brown and the spice mixture is well coated to the chicken pieces.

Add the yogurt at this moment and mix well. Stir-fry till oil separates.

Add about 2 cups of hot water. Cover with a light lid and cook in low heat until chicken pieces are done. Check the seasoning and stir in between to avoid burning. [ I have added a few potato pieces in there, as we love potatoes in chicken curries.]

When you have your desired consistency of gravy(this is not a completely dry gravy dish) and chicken are done, add lemon juice. Mix well. Remove from heat and garnish with fresh coriander leaves.

Serve at once from your cooking pan, I mean from your Balti, with a naan or paratha or with any Indian Flatbread. We had it with tawa roti.

You may get the original recipe here.

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