I usually have a stock of boneless chicken lying in the freezer especially for Nabeel. Besides, the boneless chicken I also have copious amounts of malai aka fresh milk cream accumulated in the freezer, at any given time. Hence, I decided to combine the 2 and create Chicken Malai Tikka – a comparatively less spiced recipe from the fiery tikka family. The recipe is fairly simple, just needs time for a good amount of marination. Unlike the authentic tikka preparations, I grilled them over gas flame on a Cerastone grill plate that my mom owns, I am totally in love with it.
This is also a good prepare ahead recipe, just marinate and freeze till guests plan to make a surprise visit. It can be frozen for months, but I would not go beyond 20 to 25 days.
Chicken Malai Tikka Recipe (Indian Barbequed Cream Chicken)
1. 500 gms Boneless Chicken (I always prefer the breast)
2. ½ cup fresh milk cream or malai, whisked
3. ¼ cup fresh curd or yogurt, beaten
4. 1 teaspoon freshly powdered cardamom
5. 1 tablespoon lemon juice
6. 1 tablespoon fresh ginger – garlic paste
7. Salt and Pepper powder as per taste
Step 1: Wash and dry chicken. Cut it into bite sized pieces, roughly 1×1 inch.
Step 2: Rub lemon juice, ginger-garlic paste, salt and pepper over the chicken. Let it sit for 30 minutes.
Step 3: After 30 minutes, add malai, curd and cardamom powder to the chicken. Let the chicken sit in the marinade for at least 2 hours, before cooking.
Step 4: To cook the tikkas, skewer them on wooden or metal skewers and cook in a pre-heated oven @ 220C or 400F for 20 minutes, while basting with oil or butter every 5 minutes.
Step 5: You can also pan cook them over gas flame in a non-stick pan or, on a non-stick grill plate (the one I used). It's important to brush the chicken occasionally with butter or oil to ensure even cooking and avoid dryness in tikkas.
Step 6: Serve the tikkas hot along with a tangy sliced onion, tomato, cucumber, coriander and green chilli salad. A hot coriander – mint chutney also is a popular accompaniment with tikkas.
Dish them out and enjoy the happy faces of children and adults alike :-)
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