Okay, so I know the Indian food I make is not authentic in any way, shape, or form, but we do love it. Our favorite Indian dish is Butter Chicken (Chicken Makhani) with freshly made naan (Indian flatbread) alongside.
Living in fairly rural Wisconsin, I feel the need to continue to broaden my children’s world view on food, so I try to make something ethnic at least once a week. We recently had Butter Chicken over Farro, Naan, and Watermelon-Cucumber Salad. It rocked. And I made enough chicken to put a meal in the freezer for the future.
The butter chicken recipe can be found at Tasty Kitchen. Although the recipe calls for cooking it on the stovetop, I’ve also just put all the ingredients except the cream in the crockpot and it’s delish. Without heating up your kitchen. This dish is not at all spicy, but you could make it so if you wished.
1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water
1/4 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons milk
1 egg, beaten
2 teaspoons salt
4 1/2 cups bread flour
2 teaspoons minced garlic (optional)
1/4 cup butter, melted
1. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand about 10 minutes, until frothy. Stir in sugar, milk, egg, salt, and enough flour to make a soft dough. Knead for 6 to 8 minutes on a lightly floured surface, or until smooth. Place dough in a well oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth, and set aside to rise. Let it rise 1 hour, until the dough has doubled in volume.
2. Punch down dough, and knead in garlic. Pinch off small handfuls of dough about the size of a golf ball. Roll into balls, and place on a tray. Cover with a towel, and allow to rise until doubled in size, about 30 minutes.
5. Place dough on grill, and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until puffy and lightly browned. Brush uncooked side with butter, and turn over. Brush cooked side with butter, and cook until browned, another 2 to 4 minutes.
Remove from grill, and continue the process until all the naan has been prepared. I cook mine on a cast iron grill pan inside, but it can be grilled outside, as well.
This is best served fresh off the grill, but it can be stored, wrapped tightly, then reheated in the microwave or oven.
This Cucumber Watermelon Salad is one of those happy accidents in the kitchen. I needed a refreshing salad to go along with our Butter Chicken, and only had a couple of cucumbers so couldn’t make a cucumber salad. I added watermelon, and it was exactly what I had in mind.
Cucumber Watermelon Salad
6 cups cubed seeded watermelon
4 small cucumbers, cubed
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tablespoon white sugar (optional)
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
Place the watermelon and cucumber cubes in a large bowl, and gently toss with the salt, pepper, and sugar. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and toss to coat. Refrigerate for 15 minutes, then gently toss one last time before serving.