Currently, my brother and sister in law are following a super strict ketogenic diet (A High Fat and Low Carb diet). Hats off to them for their consistency, they are onto this diet for two weeks now. I wanted to join their keto club, but Alas I have been living my life for Carbs. However, my new year resolution is to eat more consciously and mindfully (Well hello, do new year resolutions ever materialize? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯).
On daily basis, we keep stuffing ourselves with the carbs; we don’t even require. Also in our desi cuisine where Chapati (Flatbread) and Chawal (Rice)are a mandatory item for everyday consumption, staying low on carbs is quite a challenge. But we can’t play a blame game here or can we? because “Where there’s a will there is always a way“.
While i am on my new agenda of staying low on carbs, i tried this recipe of Chicken Malai Boti from Saliha Cooks cookbook Khazana. I must say what a visual retreat this book is and what an inspiring individual Saliha is. If you have a thing for cookbooks, adding it to your collection is a must. Coming back to the recipe, I eliminated the Carb-y ingredients from her recipe and came up with my own version of these delicious chicken bites.
One of the main ingredients used in this recipe is Greek Yogurt. I wasn’t very familiar with this product since it’s not very common in this part of the world where i live. Thanks to Google i found out that Greek yogurt has less sugar and carbohydrates than regular yogurt (first step towards conscious eating, wohooo). So yeah, lets go make this recipe.
This is a super easy recipe which requires only two steps: Marination and then Roasting.
For marination, mix all the ingredients and add the chicken cut into bite size chunks into the mixture. Cover the container with a cling film or plastic wrap and set aside for couple of hours. I marinated it in the afternoon and made it for dinner, so roughly the chicken was marinated for around 6 hours.
Pro Tip: Since poultry is not a tough cut and can turn into a mush if kept too long in marinade, so do not leave it in the mixture for an extended period. 3-4 hours of marination is enough.
For Roasting, slide the chicken into barbecue/bamboo sticks. This is totally optional. Since i am into visually appealing food so i do these creative stunts. You can just grease a baking tray with olive oil and place the chicken chunks onto the tray. It is ready to go into the preheated oven. Bake Chicken for 25 minutes at 250 C. I use a very basic electric oven and i am usually pretty satisfied with the results.
As the timer of your oven beeps, remove the chicken from the oven. By this time the chicken must be turned golden brown. Now pour some olive oil or ghee (1 table spoon) in a frying pan and place the chicken into it, cook until it reaches the desired color. (It will only take 2-3 minutes; don’t forget to flip the chicken to get same color on both sides). This is a desi version of pan basting.
In this recipe, a lot of creamy marinade is left behind once you cook the chicken. It didn’t felt right to waste this flavorful mixture. I decided to use it as a sauce. For this, pour one table spoon of olive oil in the pan and add the marinade to it. Stir continuously until the marinade starts boiling. Remove it from the stove and pour it in the bowl. This sauce shall add additional moisture and texture to the meal.
Now the million dollar question is, Is it safe to reuse the leftover marinade?
Google is my best friend when i am challenged with such questions. After some research I found out that the raw chicken leaves harmful bacteria in the marinade ( i already knew this). The way to kill the bacteria is to cook the mixture since the foodborne bacteria die at 165 F (75 C) *poor fellows sob sob*. So it is totally safe to use the marinade after some cooking but never get tempted to reuse leftover marinade without first cooking it.
Try the recipe and Please get back to me by clicking Connect.
The original recipe is by MasterChef UK 2017 winner, from her debut cook book Khazana.
Chicken Malai BotiPrint Recipe
- Boneless Chicken -1/2 kg (Cut into bite size chunks)
- Cooking Oil or Ghee - 1 tablespoon ( For Pan Basting)
- For Marination:
- Greek Yogurt - 4 table spoons (heaped)
- Single Cream - 4 table spoons (heaped)
- Cheddar Cheese - 4 table spoons (grated)
- Fresh Coriander leaves - 2 table spoons (finely chopped)
- Green Chilies - 2-3 (finely chopped)
- Lemon Juice - 1/2 lemon
- Chili Flakes - 1 teaspoon
- Ginger Paste - 1 teaspoon
- Garlic Paste - 1 teaspoon
- Salt - As required
Cut boneless chicken into bite size chunks.
Transfer Chicken to a bowl and add all the ingredients mentioned above for marination.Mix well.
Cover the bowl with a cling film and keep it in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours.
After Chicken is marinated,grease the baking tray with cooking oil and place the chunks covered with marinade onto the tray in a single layer.
Roast for 25 minutes at 250 C. (By this time chicken has turned golden brown).
Remove the Chicken from oven.
Put a frying pan on the stove and add 1 table spoon cooking oil or ghee.
Place the Chicken chunks on the pan and keep flipping from time to time until reddish brown color is achieved
Dish it out.
If any marinade is left behind, take one table spoon oil in a pan, add the marinade and let it boil. Remove and serve with the Chicken bites. This sauce is totally optional, if you don't feel like reusing marinade just discard it.
If you are living in Islamabad, you can find Greek Yogurt at Esajee's in Kohsar Market F-6.