RECIPE: Make Tabla’s Butter Chicken

Tabla’s Butter Chicken     
Courtesy of Praveen Sharma

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Tabla’s Butter Chicken Courtesy of Praveen Sharma

I am a longtime Atlanta resident and recently found your column where I can request the recipe for a dish from any restaurant in the city. I would like to have the recipe for the Butter Chicken from Tabla. — Karim Lawrence, Atlanta

Tabla owner Sandeep Kothary was pleased to share this recipe that comes from executive chef Praveen Sharma. After testing it, we can understand why our reader was interested in learning how to make this dish. Butter chicken is a staple dish from northern India and surely counts as comfort food for those who like a bit of spice.

The ingredients are available at your closest Indian grocery, or at large markets that carry a variety of international foods such as the Buford Highway or DeKalb farmers markets.

Tabla’s Butter Chicken
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt, plus extra for garnish
  • 4 tablespoons ginger-garlic paste, divided
  • 2 tablespoons garam masala, divided
  • 6 teaspoons kasoori methi (also known as fenugreek), divided
  • 3 teaspoons cumin, divided
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon Kashmiri chili powder
  • Salt
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts
  • 1 tablespoon clarified butter
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 (14-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons red chili powder
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • Garlic butter and sprigs of cilantro, for garnish
  • Naan and plain rice, for serving
  • In a large bowl, whisk together yogurt, 2 tablespoons ginger-garlic paste, 1 tablespoon garam masala, 3 teaspoons kasoori methi, 1 teaspoon cumin, turmeric and Kashmiri chili powder. Taste for seasoning, adding salt if needed. Add chicken and toss to coat well, then marinate, refrigerated, for 30 minutes.
  • While chicken is marinating, start sauce: heat butter and oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and saute until it turns golden brown, about 10 minutes. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons ginger-garlic paste and cook 1 minute. Then stir in remaining 1 tablespoon garam masala and 2 teaspoons cumin. Decrease heat to low and let sauce simmer 30 minutes.
  • While sauce is cooking, heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a rimmed baking sheet.
  • Arrange chicken on prepared baking sheet and bake 30 minutes. Remove from oven, cool and cut chicken into julienne strips. Set aside.
  • While chicken is cooking, finish sauce by stirring in crushed tomatoes and red chili powder. Taste for salt and simmer 10 minutes. Sauce should thicken and turn a deep red-brown color. Remove saucepan from heat and puree mixture in a blender or with an immersion blender. Return sauce to pan and add cream, sugar and remaining 3 teaspoons kasoori methi. Add cooked chicken and heat 5 minutes or until chicken is heated through and sauce has thickened. Garnish with garlic butter, cilantro and dots of yogurt, and serve with naan and rice. Serves 4.

Nutritional information

Per serving: Per serving: 372 calories (percent of calories from fat, 53), 30 grams protein, 14 grams carbohydrates, 4 grams fiber, 22 grams total fat (11 grams saturated), 128 milligrams cholesterol, 202 milligrams sodium.

From the menu of...Tabla, 77 12th St., Atlanta. 404-464-8571,

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