Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Lehsuni Murgh (Chicken in garlic sauce)

I just wonder how people manage with just 24 hours in a day. I want to do so many things, and 24 hours seem like too short for me, half of which I labour off in office and travelling. I really want to spend some quality time every day for writing but the challenge is that I cannot write until my mind is at total peace, which rarely happens. Added to this is my procastination nature. When I want to write I end up reading a book, and then when I want to read I end up playing Candy crush. Such a shame on me. There was a time when I looked down upon all the people who played candy crush on Facebook. I had even unfriended a few just to stop those annoying notifications from candy crush. Now I am myself a slave of this game. Well actually its a good way to make your mind empty. Statergy games kind of drain you out. But this one is a full time pass thing. When you dont have anything better to do play candy crush. Dont roll your eyes already, at least I am not bothering anyone with annoying notifications, isnt that good enough?

Weekend time means chicken time. And everytime its a challenge to find a new recipe which doesnt bore the chef, thats me. It becomes even more challenging when you have limited ingredients in your pantry (because the chef was too lazy to go shopping for ingredients after office on Friday). So with limited ingredients at disposal I surfed throught he net for any recipe that would fit in and yet be a bit different. Fennel Chicken - No, Dahi Chicken - No, Pepper Chicken - No, Poppy Seed Chicken - Ran out of poppy seeds so No, Chicken Korma - No and the Nos went on for more than 40 minutes. I was exhausted surfing and also the clock was ticking away frantically. My maid would be here and before that I need to get the cooking done. Finally I found a recipe which seemed something I could try - Lehsuni Chicken by Piya Mallick. The pics looked great and best thing I had all the ingredients with me.

So it was chop, cut, wash, whisk time and in like an hour I had recreated the dish in my own style. My maid was already in by that time and threatening me to clear off from the kitchen area so that she could do the poocha. hence the pictures are not so picturesque this time, but trust me the taste was much better than the pictures.

If you make the gravy dry then it would pair well with any Indian breads, else if you keep a little gravy then it would be a good option to serve with rice. This dish already has a lot of garlic but if you are a garlic lover then you can add more as well.

Preparation Time: 20 minutes  

Cooking Time: 40 minutes

Serves: 2

Cuisine: North Indian


  • Chicken - 750 gm 
  • Curd - 200 gm
  • Onion - 1 1/2 medium sized
  • Potato - 2 medium , quatered (Optional)
  • Lemon - half juiced
  • Whole Peppercorn - 10-12
  • Garlic clove - 15-20 
  • Ginger - 2 inch
  • Green Chilli - 2 medium
  • Cinnamon - 2 inch stick
  • Cardamom - 2-3
  • Clove - 2
  • Cashew Nuts - 3-4
  • Red Chilli Powder - 
  • Turmeric Powder -
  • Coconut Milk - 1 tbsp (optional)
  • Salt & Sugar as per taste
  • Mustard Oil 

1. Clean the chicken and pat dry. 

2. Take a skillet and dry roast 15 fat garlic cloves and whole peppercorns till fragrant. Grind the roasted garlic, peppercorn, cashew nuts and a spoon of curd into a fine paste.

3. Add this paste to the chicken along with the whisked curd, 1 tsp red chilli powder, 1/2 spoon mustard oil, turmeric powder and lemon juice. Marinate the chicken for an hour or at least 30 minutes.

Please note that I do not add salt during marination as it takess out all moisture from the chicken which makes the chicken dry.

4. Heat some mustard oil in a pan and add sliced onions, chopped green chillies and roughly chopped ginger. Mustard oil gives a fine flavor to the overall dish. Fry till the onions become pink. In a grinder grind the three ingredients into a fine paste. Take care while doing this as the ingredients might be hot. Fry the potato cubes and keep aside.

5. Take rest of the 5 garlic cloves and crush them coarsely. In the same pan add some more oil. When hot add the crushed garlic, cinnamon, cardamom and cloves. When the garlic is fragrant, add the onion paste and fry for a minute.

6. Shake off the extra marinade from the chicken pieces and add them to the pan. Add the fried potato. Fold in. Fry the chicken till slightly golden along edges. 

7. Add the left over marinade and cook till oil seperates. Take care not to burn the masala. If you feel the masala is sticking to the bottom of the pan add some warm water and keep stirring. Cook till the chicken is well done.

8. Add the coconut milk at this point to make the gravy rich in texture. You can skip this step if you wish. Cook till dish has reached the desired consistency. Top it off with half a spoon of butter. Cover the lid and let the butter melt into the gravy.

Let the chicken dish sit for a while before you serve it with rice or roti.

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