This recipe uses butter for sautéing and to finish a rich sauce. It’s a classic Indian dish that takes almost less time to make than the accompanying rice. Spice it up, or not, with green chile peppers. By the way, this dish gets better with time. Make it up to two days ahead, refresh with more pepper and cilantro, if needed, and dig in.

Butter Chicken

This recipe uses butter for sautéing and to finish a rich sauce. It’s a classic Indian dish that takes almost less time to make than the accompanying rice. Spice it up, or not, with green chile peppers. By the way, this dish gets better with time. Make it up to two days ahead, refresh with more pepper and cilantro, if needed, and dig in.

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Two small roasted chickens
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 cups canned tomato puree
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup julienned fresh ginger
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 green chiles, stemmed, chopped and seeded
  • Rice
  • Prepared mango chutney

Directions

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add two tablespoons butter. When melted, add the chicken pieces, sprinkle with cumin and sauté, turning often, for three to four minutes.

Add the tomato puree, cream, ginger, cilantro, black pepper and chiles, if using. Simmer for 15 minutes until the chicken absorbs some of the sauce and becomes very tender. Stir in the remaining two tablespoons butter. Transfer to a warm serving dish and serve with plenty of rice and topped with mango chutney.

* You can also substitute about three pounds of cooked chicken thighs, breasts or a combination.

Makes 6-8 servings.