Friday, June 26, 2015

Haryali chicken kabab

Tonight's Menu
Haryali chicken kabab
Veggie kababs
Tabbouleh salad (recipe here)
Mint chutney (recipe here)

Haryali chicken kabab
Haryali Chicken Kabab is one of the many varieties of Indian kababs generally served in almost every Indian Restaurant. In Hindi the word 'Haryali' means greenery and haryali chicken kabab literally translates to chicken kebabs with greens paste. Boneless chicken pieces are marinated in a mixture of curd, spinach and several other greens, then grilled to perfection.
To make the aromatic green marinade, I used five green leafy veggies and herbs - spinach, methi(fenugreek), coriander, mint and dill. You can combine the greens in any proportion as per your taste. For my family's palette these proportions worked very well (see recipe below). Give a minimum of four hours marination time for the chicken to pick up all the aromatic flavors. I added very few spices so as not to divert the flavor from the greens.
To accompany these gorgeous kababs I opted for a colorful palette of chunky veggies (very simply flavored) and nutrient packed Tabbouleh salad (find the recipe here). 

Haryali chicken kabab with Grilled Veggies and Tabbouleh salad
Haryali chicken kabab
Ingredients: (serves 4-6)
2 lbs boneless chicken thighs
1/4 cup thick yogurt
2 tsp lime juice
1/2 cup coriander leaves
1/3 cup mint leaves
1/4 cup methi leaves (fenugreek) chopped
1/2 cup spinach leaves, chopped
1/4 cup dill leaves
2 inch ginger piece
6-8 cloves garlic
4-5 green chilies (optional)
1 tsp cumin powder
Salt to taste
  1. Clean the chicken and cut into bite size chunks. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle lime juice on them and keep aside while you prepare the marinade.
  2. Roughly chop all the greens. Combine methi, spinach, coriander, mint, dill, ginger, garlic and green chilies. Grind into a smooth paste using 1 tablespoon oil and a little bit of the yogurt. This will take some manipulation as you don't want to add any more liquid than necessary to grind. I used almost half the yogurt for grinding.
  3. Now add the rest of the yogurt and spices to ground paste. Remember chicken is already seasoned, so add salt accordingly.  
  4. Marinate the chicken pieces in the green marinade. Cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours, so that chicken gets the aroma and flavors of green paste and spices.
  5. If you are using wooden skewers then don't forget to pre soak them. Thread the marinated chicken on to the skewers. 
  6. Grill at medium high heat for 15-20 minutes till cooked through and evenly browned on all sides. If using the oven, cook for 15-20 minutes in a 350 F preheated oven.  
  7. For both methods of cooking keep checking and turning the skewers  to ensure even cooking from all the sides. 
  8. Serve hot sprinkled with lime juice.
Veggie kababs
Use any veggies you like or that are seasonally available like mushrooms, cherry tomaoes, onions, peppers, zucchini, etc. I used a combination of colored peppers, green and yellow zucchini and pineapple. I kept the dressing very simple so as not to have a flavor competition with the chicken kababs.  
Ingredients:
2 yellow zucchinis
2 large green zucchinis
1 each red and orange pepper
1/2 pineapple
  1. Cut all the veggies into chunky pieces suitable for cooking on the BBQ. 
  2. Put all the veggies in a large bowl and add olive oil, lime juice, salt, pepper and oregano. Mix thoroughly and then arrange them on skewers ready to cook.
  3. Grill on high till tender crisp.
Vegetarian option
Haryali vegetarian kabab (tofu)

For a vegetarian option substitute chicken with paneer or tofu and proceed with the above recipe. Comes out super delish. Just alter the cooking time. Here is a picture of tofu haryali kababs.