Longevity the secret to this Atlanta restaurant’s dish

Credit: Angela Hansberger

Credit: Angela Hansberger

Dish of the Week: Chicken tandoori at Raduni Indian Cuisine

A tandoor is a bell-shaped, clay oven designed to reach extremely high temperatures. It’s a cooking powerhouse that has remained virtually unchanged for the past 3,000 years. It’s also the secret to the success of Raduni’s chicken tandoori.

The combination of this simple cooking method and a great gust of spice creates a rich, complex flavor. Leg quarters are marinated in yogurt and laden with spices for 24 hours. The mixture — ginger, coriander, garlic, paprika, turmeric, cumin, black pepper and chile peppers — imparts not only flavor, but a distinctive brick-red hue, once the chicken is cooked.

As it roasts over an open flame, the high heat crisps the exterior, while leaving the inside tender and juicy. Charred bits fleck the red chicken. With each bite, the taste ranges from smoky to sweet to spicy to sour. A splash of lemon accentuates the acidity of the yogurt, and the flavors are bold, creating a tangy, spicy gravy that goes well with aromatic basmati rice.