Chicken Tikkas/Tandoori chicken/Desi Roast chicken

This is a very popular starter especially in UK restaurants.  There are many connotations to the recipe and to the look too!  From being bright red, to orange, to yellow, to pale etc. here is my version of this easily reproduced tandoori/desi roast in the home!


  • 2lb boneless chicken cut into 2in cubes or 1 small chicken cut into 16 pieces, wash and drain in a colander, pat dry each piece of chicken with a kitchen towel and keep in a bowl
  • 2 tbs yoghurt
  • 1 tbs ginger
  • 1 tbs garlic
  • 4 crushed fresh green chillies or 1 tbs hot chillie flakes (reduce for mild)
  • 1 tbs coarsely ground cumin
  • 1 tsp coarsely ground dry coriander
  • 2 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 2 tbs tomato puree
  • 2 tbs ready fried brown onions (optional)
  • 3 tbs oil for tempering and 2 cloves (optional)


  1. Put all ingredients except chicken and oil in a bowl, put the oil in a frying pan, heat until almost smoking, drop in the cloves, switch off and immediately transfer the hot oil to the masala/yoghurt mix, stir in the oil.
  2. Add this mixture onto the washed chicken in the bowl, mix well with hands (wear gloves if your have sensitive skin) until all pieces are fully coated.
  3. Marinate 24 hours (or 48 hours for an even better result!).
  4. To BBQ – Thread chicken pieces onto thin metal skewers, place on hot bbq, when charred, turn over and cook other side until cooked.
  5. T Bake – Place the chicken in an ovenproof baking dish and cook uncovered in a medium hot oven for 50mins until chicken is fully cooked.
  6. To Steam – Place the marinated chicken in a frying pan or deep non-stick saucepan, cook on medium heat until liquids dry up and chicken is almost cooked (20mins), turn on high and stir a couple of times and dry all liquids. 
  7. Serve hot with tamarind chutney and/or coconut chutney, tabouleh salad and/or Egyptian salad.


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About Me

I am Sabiha Khokhar, born in Kenya now living in London – a busy working mother, wife, published author and passionate cook. Despite having many interests in life, my greatest joy is FOOD!

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