Tandoori style chicken with Chicken pea salsa

I have always loved the marriage of hot and cold, spicy and calm, fire and ice. Don’t know where it began but I suspect it might have been late night kebabs during University that probably sparked it. There’s something amazingly, unspeakably fantastic about the coming together of  insane heat (spice) and something cool and calming……a hot chili sauce and creamy garlic yogurt…this is the stuff of legend!! I’ve always made a point of requesting the hottest hot sauce I can get as long as it has the safety net of a good cool counter point and this particular dish has it in spades. It isn’t officially a Tandoori dish simply because I ain’t got a Tandoor oven however it does have all the hall marks a good Tandoori dish should have.

serves 4

1 whole chicken – jointed (2 breasts and two legs is what you need)

Chick pea salsa
1 can chick peas, drained
1/2 courgette finely diced
2 big assed tomatoes seeded and finely diced
1 medium red onion finely diced
1/2 small cucumber, seeded and finely diced

Tandoori Marinade
4 tablespoons Greek style yogurt
1 tbs salt
1 tps cracked black pepper
1 tps cayenne pepper
2 tps cumin powder
2 tps minced ginger
2 tps minced garlic
2 tps paprika (any type)
2 tps turmeric powder
2 tps garam masala
3 tbs white wine vinegar
1 big squirt tomato puree
As much chili powder as you can stand

This is an over night marinade job – mix all of the marinade ingredients together – taste and season, if it tastes bitter bang in some more yogurt. Next skin the chicken joints, slash randomly and dunk in the marinade. Cling and sling in the fridge over night – no more no less!

When you’re ready to bounce and get your cook on – whack the chicken into a full tilt oven in earthen ware dish and hard roast for 20 minutes. When this is going down get your chick peas together, combine all of the ingredients above and season with some olive oil a little sugar and some garlic salt – a squeeze of lime if you have it sets the dish off a treat.

When the chicken is completely cooked (cut into it and check) the sling it under an insanely hot grill or onto a griddle plate to ‘blacken’ it up around the edges (see the pic).

Serve the piping hot Tandoori style chicken on the cold and cool chick pea salsa – fwiggin’ heaven!!

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