The world famous Indian Tandoori Chicken has its origin in the Mughal era during the rule of Emperor Jahangir, who is also credited for creating the portable or transportable tandoor.
Tandoor is a traditional clay oven holding a small fire created by slow burning coal or wood meant for baking and cooking.
Existence of the tandoor has been found at sites of the Indus Valley Civilization (Harappa and Mohenjo-daro) dating back to 3000 B.C.
Originally the tandoor cooking concept was from Persia which traveled to the Indian sub-continent with the Arabs via Afghanistan.
The word Tandoor is derived from the Persian word "Tannur" which was derived from the Babylonian word "Tinuru" which further got polished to the word "Tandur" in Turkish.
The concept of built-in tandoor in a restaurant was first introduced at Moti Mahal restaurant in Delhi in the year 1948.
The restaurant owner Kundan Lal Gujral, wanted to create a unique dish using the traditional tandoor.
This lead to the creation of the famous "Tandoori Chicken".
The chicken pieces are marinated with yogurt, fresh lime or lemon juice, seasoned with Cayenne pepper, Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder, tandoori masala, turmeric powder, garlic paste, ginger paste and salt.
The chilly powder gives a red fiery hue and the turmeric powder gives an orange hue to the Tandoori Chicken. Some times yellow and red edible food colors are added to get bright colors.
Tandoori Chicken can also be cooked on a modern or traditional barbecue grill. I have cooked it on a gas stove using a skillet/tawa.
You can use an oven at 200 Degree/400 Fahrenheit for 10-12 minutes or until done.
The most simplest Indian non-vegetarian starters, it goes best when served with Mint/Pudina dip/chutney or with onion rings and lemon wedges.
Check out the ingredients and step by step method for preparing Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks.
Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks
Preparation/Total Time: 120 mins/180 mins
10 Chicken Drumsticks
1 tsp Garlic paste
1 tsp Ginger paste
6 Tbsp Hung Yogurt/Curd/Dahi
1 tsp Kashmiri Red Chilly powder
2 Tbsp Garam Masala or Tandoori Chicken Masala powder
1 Tbsp melted Butter for basting
1. Wash, pat dry the chicken drumsticks with a clean cloth.
2. Make diagonal incisions on both sides of the drumsticks with a knife.
3. Now squeeze in the lemon juice and apply some salt to the drumsticks and keep aside for about 15 minutes.
4. Mix garlic paste, ginger paste, garam masala or tandoori masala, yogurt, Kashmiri red chilly powder, salt.
5. Marinade each drumsticks properly with the above mixture and keep aside for about 2 hours.
6. Now apply/baste each drumstick with the melted butter and keep aside.
7. Heat a non-stick Skillet/Tawa on medium flame.
8. Place each drumstick one by one on the skillet and cook on low flame for about 40 minutes or till the drumsticks are done.
Tip: Slow cooking method is ideal when making tandoori chicken on a gas stove.
9. Flip and cook each side of the drumsticks while basting them with the remaining marinade and melted butter.
10. Once done remove on a serving platter and serve with onions rings, lemon wedges or mint/pudina dip/chutney. You can sprinkle some chaat masala also.