Monday, February 27, 2012

Shortcut Butter Chicken

Ok, first off, please excuse the picture. I just don't think there's any feasible way to make it not look like a big pile of mush.

BUT, friends, do not let pictures deceive you, lest you should miss out on one of the most simple, delicious ways to prepare this tasty Indian dish.

Most of the ingredients you'll have in the pantry, but maybe not the garam masala. Garam masala is a blend of Indian spices that I find tastes relatively similar to restaurant spice blends. You can find it at most grocery stores with the other spices. But again, I remind you that this is the shortcut version! If you're looking for authentic, sorry, but I should redirect you to...not here. This recipe is completely customizable according to taste and preference, so there's no wrong way of doing it! It will always be delicious.

I should also mention that I have what some might call an obsession with using rotisserie chicken in recipes. To me it's just a cheap shortcut; I get meat thats pre-cooked and usually cooked well, and for less than I'd pay for 1.5 lbs of chicken tenderloins at the store...can you see where I'm going with this? I love cooking, but I also love easy. So...that's how I created this!

Also, I just want to note that this is husband and Dad approved. For the adventurous eaters they are, they usually shy away from "ethnic" (read: anything not Italian or Mexican), but both enjoyed this dish!

Serve it up with some white rice and garlic naan and you'll have a full-bellied happy family with money to spare. Dontcha love that?

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Shortcut Butter Chicken
Recipe adapted from this recipe


  • 1 whole onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons of butter (give or take)
  • 14.5 oz can tomato sauce (not pasta sauce, y'all-just straight up tomato sauce)
  • 14.5 oz can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1-3 tablespoon garam masala (you'll adjust according to taste)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 2-2.5 cups cooked, shredded/chopped chicken
  • Fresh cilantro

Heat up your butter in a skillet and saute the onion until translucent. Add the cans of tomatoes and give it a quick stir. Here's where you get to customize the recipe (generous of me, I know)-start off slowly if you've never had garam masala before. I usually start with one tablespoon, taste, and add according to how much more I want. I usually end up adding about 2.5 tablespoons total, but it's up to you! 

Bring up the heat a bit until the sauce begins to boil, cover with a lid then reduce to a simmer. Simmer around 25-30 minutes. Do you smell the deliciousness? You should. Add in your shredded chicken. I usually just kind of add until I think there's enough; I like my sauce to chicken ration to be pretty equal, but you can do it however you want! Once the chicken is heated through, reduce the heat to low and add in your heavy cream. Note: I usually don't end up adding a whole pint because I think it makes the sauce too liquid-y. This is another adjust according to taste/thickness preference. Make sure everything is good and heated through, and you're good to go! Sprinkle on some chopped fresh cilantro if you want, and you've got yourself a happy tummy. 

And there you have it. My shortcut version of Butter Chicken. What are some of your favorite dishes that you have a shortcut for? 

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