Spicy Masala Chicken — 4 out of 5 stars

Alright, everyone.  I have a new goal.  It’s to review an average of one recipe a week for the next three months.  Depending on how that goes, I may try to keep it up through the end of the year.  On that note, here’s my review of a tasty dish I made last week.

A couple of years ago, a friend gave me the book Low Fat Low Cholesterol edited by Anne Sheasby.  (Well, technically speaking, I took it out of her trash/donate pile when she was moving to a different stated.)  I saw her a month ago, and was inspired to use her book.  I selected the Spicy Masala Chicken recipe on page 190 because it sounded good, and did not require any special ingredients.

The marinade went together easily.  In the mixing bowl, it did not look like it’d be enough for all the chicken, but if you turn the chicken periodically, it works just fine.  The recipe called for crushed dried red chilies.  I didn’t feel like buying red chilies at the store, so I planned on using red pepper flakes.  As luck would have it, I was out of red pepper flakes when I made this dish, so I substituted an equal amount of ground red pepper.  That was probably a bit much…if you use the ground red pepper, I’d suggest using a 1/2 teaspoon or so (or keep the 1 tsp if you like it hot).  I skipped the green chilies called for because, well, because I don’t really like green chilies.

Broiling the chicken was an excellent idea (good job Anne Sheasby).  The dish was gorgeous coming out of the oven.  I sprinkled the finished product with extra fresh cilantro just before serving.  I plated the dish with rice — a white and brown rice mixture — and Spicy Okra with Tomatoes side dish.  Mmmmmmm…  The texture of the chicken was just your basic broiled chicken texture (random thought: you could probably also BBQ this dish and have positive results).  The spiciness was apparent with the first bite or two, but after that, even with the 1 tsp red pepper, it wasn’t that bad.  I ended up making a gravy by adding flour to the drippings, and spooning that gravy over the rice.  

I really enjoyed this dish.  It was good not only just after taking it out of the oven, but also three days later when I served it to a friend.  Since I usually cook for just one, dishes that keep are important to me.  

Makes 6 servings


12 chicken thighs without skin
6 Tbsp fresh lemon juice (from 2-3 large lemons)
1 1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger
2 small garlic cloves, crushed
1/2 to 1 tsp ground red pepper
1 tsp salt
1 tsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp honey
2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
2 Tbsp flour (optional, only for gravy)



  1. Rinse, pat dry, and prick the chicken thighs.  Set aside in a large bowl.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the lemon juice, ginger, garlic, crushed dried red chilies, salt, sugar, and honey.
  3. Transfer the chicken thighs to the spice mixture and coat well.  Let marinate for 45 minutes, turning chicken periodically.
  4. Preheat the broiler to medium.  Put the chicken thighs in a flame-proof dish, and and pour any remaining marinade over the chicken.  Sprinkle with cilantro.
  5. Broil the chicken thighs under the preheated broiler for 15-20 minutes, turning occassionally (I didn’t turn at all).  Cooked until browned and done through.
  6. For the gravy, put the drippings in a small saucepan.  Whisk in the flour.  Over medium heat, cook until the mixture thickens (5ish minutes
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