Whole Xmas Butter Chicken

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Directions

  1. Spatchcock the chicken, rub all over, place on rack in fridge for 1-3 days. Bring up to room temp - roast 240 20mins, 210 40 mins. Rest 20mins.

  2. For the raita, blend the yoghurt with the mint and combine with the other ingredients.

  3. Make your sauce. Heat the neutral oil in  a heavy-bottomed pot and throw in the cardamom, bay, cinnamon stick. Turn in the fat, then add the cumin seed and caraway seed. After 10 seconds, add the chillies, onions and a good pinch of salt. Cook until richly golden, about 10 minutes. Lower the heat slightly and add the the ginger / garlic paste. Cook it out then add the ground spices. Turn through the base to bloom them. Add water to stop the spices catching. Once evaporated, add the loosened tomato puree and cook out for a few minutes. Add the passata and stir to combine. Taste for salt.

  4. When the fat separates, about 10 minutes, add your creams, kewra and rose waters and bring back up to heat. Add butter, honey, lemon, kasoori methi and coriander. Taste. Good right?

  5. For the pulao, cook your sliced onions slowly in the butter with a good pinch of salt and the cinnamon stick until deeply rich and caramelised, stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes. To the base, add the chickpeas and sultanas and the drained rice. Over a medium flame, carefully turn the grains of the rice through the butter with a dessert spoon. Once everything is evenly coated in the onion-y butter turn the heat up to high. When you can just hear it sizzling on the bottom of the pot, add the water. Loosely cover the top of the rice / water with greaseproof paper and place on a tight-fitting lid. Cook on high for 31/2 minutes, then lowest flame for 7 minutes. Steam for 4 minutes lid on, then remove lid entirely and allow to cool briefly before turning  out.

  6. Carve your chickens and arrange on a plate, then lacquer with the makhani gravy. Eat with the rice, the raita and naan bread.