My family really enjoys the flavors of Indian food. We made coconut curry chicken in the Instant Pot several times over the winter, but this summer we tried some grilled Indian dishes. This hariyali chicken tikka recipe is one we loved and made again and again.
What Is Hariyali Chicken Tikka?
As far as I can tell, the word hariyali has to do with the color green and tikka refers to chunks of meat marinated in a spice mixture. Both descriptors certainly fit this dish.
Really… Green Chicken?
Yup, green chicken. But trust me, this green chicken is good for you!
I use a large quantity of cilantro and mint to make the marinade for the chicken. Even after cooking the chicken, it’s still a nice bright green color, which the kids think is pretty cool. Maybe a different idea from the traditional St. Patrick’s Day foods?
Side note: If you’ve really got an abundance of fresh herbs check out this tutorial for freezing them in ice cube trays!
So What About the Tikka Part?
I use my food processor to grind the herbs and then mix them with plain yogurt and Indian spices such as garam masala and cumin. I add good-sized chunks of chicken to the herb/yogurt mixture and marinate it in the fridge for a few hours before cooking. That’s where the tikka part of the name comes from.
The marinating allows the yogurt to tenderize the chicken a little bit and intensifies the flavor of the spices. It also makes the grilling process a little healthier. Read more about that in this post.
Then I thread the chunks of chicken on skewers and grill them until they’re done. Just don’t forget to soak the skewers if you’re using wooden ones, or they’ll burn. If you’d rather not grill you can skip the skewers and just cook the chicken in a pan on the stove or under the broiler in the oven.
Hariyali Chicken Tikka Recipe
- In a small blender or food processor, combine the cilantro, mint, green chili, and ginger.
- Process until the herbs are finely chopped.
- Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in the yogurt, garam masala, turmeric, cumin, lemon juice, and salt.
- Cut the chicken into 1-inch cubes and add it to the bowl with the yogurt mixture, stirring to coat the chicken.
- Marinate in the refrigerator for a few hours.
- Thread the chicken pieces onto skewers and grill over high heat until cooked through.
- This recipe can be doubled easily. I’ve doubled the marinade recipe and had plenty for 5 pounds of chicken.
- You can also cook the chicken in a skillet without the skewers if it’s not grilling weather.
Do you have any great recipes that use cilantro or mint? I’d love to hear about them!