From Gourmet magazine, April 1999.
Servings: Serves 4.
For spice paste:
1 large garlic clove
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
1 small fresh red or green chile such as serrano or cayenne
1/3 cup low-fat plain yogurt
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh gingerroot
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander seeds
3/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves (about 1 1/4 pounds total)
1 small red onion
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
For yogurt sauce:
1/2 cup low-fat plain yogurt
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
a pinch cayenne
Make spice paste:
Mince garlic with salt and mash to a paste. Wearing protective gloves, mince chile (including seeds for a spicier paste) and in a bowl stir together with garlic paste and remaining spice paste ingredients.
Make 3 diagonal cuts about 1/4 inch deep in each chicken breast and rub spice paste into cuts and all over chicken. Marinate chicken, covered, 30 minutes at cool room temperature.
Preheat broiler and line broiler pan with foil. Halve onion through root end and reserve 1 half for sauce. Thinly slice remaining onion half, separating layers, and in a small bowl soak onion slices in ice water to cover while broiling chicken.
Arrange chicken without crowding on rack of broiler pan. Brush chicken with 1 teaspoon vegetable oil and broil about 3 inches from heat 8 minutes. Turn chicken over and brush with remaining teaspoon vegetable oil. Broil chicken until lightly browned and just cooked through, about 6 minutes more.
Make sauce while chicken is broiling:
Mince enough reserved onion to measure 1 tablespoon and in a small bowl stir together with all sauce ingredients.
Drain soaked onion and pat dry between paper towels. Top chicken with onion slices and serve with yogurt sauce.
- for the sauce paste, I simply threw everything into a food processor, although I removed the seeds of the chile first; same flavor, less work!
- I marinated the chicken overnight, and I think it was almost too long. 1-4 hours might be more appropriate, 30 minutes seems too short unless you're in a hurry for a weeknight dinner.
- I skipped the coriander seeds since I was making it for someone who has the coriander=soap taste issue. I'll try making it with the seeds next time.
- I didn't brush the chicken with oil at any point. So much of the marinade stuck to the chicken that it didn't seem to need it.
- I never bothered to make the onion portion, since I don't like raw onions much.
- For the sauce I just mixed the yogurt with lemon juice, salt, and cayenne.