Indian Cooking 101/ Kids Lunchbox Ideas/ Recipes: Non-Vegetarian

Indian Cooking 101: Street Food (Tandoori Chicken Pops)

In my quest to dismiss the myth that Indian cooking is not for the faint-hearted and to help spread my knowledge on some simple and traditional Indian food recipes, like this Tandoori Chicken Pops, I have started this series called Indian Cooking 101. To make it more interactive and as helpful as I can for my readers, I welcome you to email me any questions that you may have in the process. I will try and respond to the questions personally through email, or in the next part if it’s connected to what I have already planned to discuss.

Recipe for Tandoori Chicken Pops taken from www.hookedonheat.com. Visit site for detailed recipe.

Growing up, I seldom remember a weekend where we had the house to ourselves. While few weekends were spent hosting visiting family and friends from far off places, most of our Saturday nights were spent amidst mighty morsels of succulent bites of food – like Tandoori Chicken. My parents, like most true-blood Indians, love to shower people with their hospitality and feed them till they’re almost ready to burst. We Indians are known for our need to treat our guests with the utmost care and generosity, and one common way we all seem to achieve in doing so is through our food – like these Tandoori Chicken Pops.

Food holds a very special place in any Indian household. No festivity is complete without a table laden with colourful dishes end to end, enough to please a king. It’s no wonder that out of all the rooms in a home, many Indians take the most pride in showing you their kitchens. Truly, we love food, and our life surrounds it. Our conversations, no matter how they begin always seem to divert to something food-related with the topic in question. A simple wedding announcement would automatically lead to the designing of the menu. Even meeting up with a long lost friend would be done over lunch or dinner, over the food they could reminisce about.


While our meals may be laced with rich aromatic flavours, what I look forward to the most at any Indian-inspired party is the platter of appetizers. Indian hors d’oeuvres range from savoury street food, like the most loved samosas (deep-fried pastry filled with potatoes) and pakodas (spiced fritters), to the ever famous tandoori chicken and tikkas (marinated meat grilled in a clay oven). They are steamed, grilled and fried. They come in various sizes and shapes, some that can be daintily picked by two fingers, and others that require a spoon and lots of napkins. No matter in what form, they each have something special to offer, and no cocktail party would regret having them.

Ask anyone who has ever walked the streets of any major Indian city, be it Delhi, Mumbai or Bangalore; and they will attest to the fact that no evening stroll is complete without making a stop at one of the many hawker stalls that surround every busy area in these cities. Street after street, stall after stall, you will be greeted by smiling faces and tempting plates that urge you to come and give it a try. Smothered with spicy and tangy chutneys, yogurt and tons of other fixings, each plate creates a whole new tale in your mouth. My fondest memories of my days spent in India involve sneaking out of the house on the pretext of an evening walk while I actually skipped to hawker next door and enjoyed deep fried savoury chips drowned in tangy yogurt and sweet tamarind chutney, running through the rain to buy a big batch of jalapeno fritters, and waiting in long lines to savour a bite of the best kebabs I had ever tasted on the face of this planet.

A friend recently asked me to make a list of some of my favourite food joints that I strongly feel she should try on her visit to Delhi. My response was simple: if she could stomach it, nothing beats the spicy street food.

TANDOORI CHICKEN POPS

Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Servings: 4
Author: Meena, www.hookedonheat.com

Ingredients

  • 2 large chicken breasts cut into thin strips
  • 2 tbsp plain yogurt
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 2 tbsp coriander powder
  • salt to taste
  • light cooking oil enough for deep frying
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • bamboo skewers

Instructions

  • Marinate chicken strips yogurt, lemon juice, ginger-garlic paste, spices and salt. Allow it to sit in the fridge for at least an hour or so. For best results, marinate over night.
  • Heat oil in a deep pan, large enough to fry 3-4 strips at a time. Dip each strip into plain flour, coating well on all sides, before adding them to hot oil.
  • Deep fry the chicken strips till crisp and golden on all sides. Drain on paper towels, poke through with skewers and serve with Coriander-Mint Chutney.
  • Alternatively, you can avoid deep frying by simply grilling the marinated chicken on a hot grill till tender and done.

Made this recipe? Rate it by clicking the number of stars on the recipe card. Want to share your version with me? Tag me on Instagram @hookedonheat

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27 Comments

  • Reply
    Patrice M Foster
    March 21, 2015 at 5:18 PM

    5 stars
    Would love to try to make love indian food and indian rice. Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    Ashley
    March 20, 2015 at 11:29 AM

    5 stars
    I LOVE Indian food. I was just introduced to it last year and it made me wonder where it’s been all my life. I’ve cooked it a couple times myself and it’s just one of my favorite things to make. These look so good!

  • Reply
    Carol Speake
    March 20, 2015 at 10:48 AM

    5 stars
    I am always looking for new Indian recipes. Thanks for sharing this! Carol

  • Reply
    aditi
    January 17, 2012 at 8:08 AM

    5 stars
    is there a version you could do where it’s baked? if so, any idea on timings?

    Yes of course! I’d say in a 400-degree oven for about 12-15 minutes, flipping them once in between – just be sure to check and see if they’re cooked through.

  • Reply
    priyanka
    February 27, 2011 at 10:34 PM

    hey nice blog you have here!!
    did you coat the chicken with bread crumbs or something crisp because the pics of yours look like the chicken has been coated with something.

  • Reply
    SUPRIYA
    November 1, 2009 at 8:07 PM

    5 stars
    Hi Meena,
    I love love love to cook and I am even going into baking an pastry arts. I tried this recipe for my family and they I was a genius!!! I know I couldn’t take the credit, so I told them of you and they were really proud that you came up the recipe. Absolutely genius!! What I did with mine is that I used my tandoori chicken recipe and used marinated chicken tenderloins and fried them like you expained.
    It was genius, KEEP THE RECIPES FLOWING!!!

  • Reply
    Retta
    August 7, 2008 at 11:52 AM

    5 stars
    Hi Meena

    Thank you for the yummy ideas especially the tandoori chicken pops. Can’t wait to try them out on my family.

  • Reply
    Colm
    January 16, 2008 at 7:01 AM

    5 stars
    Hey, I cooked these and your dahiwali chicken to prove how domesticated I’ve got at uni when I visited my parents. They came out great, my mum even asked me for the recipes!
    Also would like to thank you for putting pictures up, lots of blogs and even cookbooks don’t which i think is a shame.

  • Reply
    Mona
    August 21, 2007 at 4:20 PM

    5 stars
    Hello Meena, the chicken looks soooooo yummy. Reading thru ur post i recollected and missed India a lot, and miss my parents, the Indian food, everything of India just too much. Will definitely try out your recipe soon.

  • Reply
    Pragyan
    August 19, 2007 at 4:05 PM

    5 stars
    Hi Meena, The tandoori chicken pops look awesome. Perfect Pic! You have an awesome amount of basic information about Indian cooking. I am passing you the “Rockin’ Girl Blogger”. Have a great time.

    Thanks so much Pragyan, I’m truly honoured! 🙂

  • Reply
    sukanya
    August 16, 2007 at 5:24 PM

    5 stars
    This is looking YUM! ….Perfect pictures….

  • Reply
    mainyacha
    August 16, 2007 at 2:04 PM

    5 stars
    wow! those look amazing!! slurp*

  • Reply
    Mallika
    August 14, 2007 at 7:48 AM

    5 stars
    That looks yummy. It’s been years since I’ve been able to eat anything off the street! Since my belly went all western timed with my move to England. Now I just satisfy myself by eating street food in posh places!!

    Gosh, I dunno what I’d do if ever I fall sick from eating the roadside delights Mallika. I’d probably just die of frustration! You should definitely try this out, I know you’ll enjoy it!

  • Reply
    Cynthia
    August 12, 2007 at 5:19 PM

    5 stars
    This is definitely a must-have the next time I entertain.

  • Reply
    rashmi
    August 11, 2007 at 3:53 PM

    5 stars
    Hi Meena,

    Wow! simply mouth watering….congrats on your new home…….have a question about the recipe? can we broil or roast them in oven?…

    Rashmi

    Yes of course! I’d say in a 400-degree oven for about 12-15 minutes, flipping them once in between – just be sure to check and see if they’re cooked through.

  • Reply
    Steamy Kitchen
    August 11, 2007 at 8:14 AM

    5 stars
    Congrats on your new home! Don’t you feel a wonderful sense of frreeeeedom?!

    🙂
    Jaden

  • Reply
    Hillary
    August 10, 2007 at 12:14 PM

    5 stars
    Oh my goodness, I’ve never been to your blog before, and this was the first entry of yours I have read, and I am sold! These tandoori chicken pops could NOT LOOK BETTER. I want them now!!! 🙂

  • Reply
    Maninas
    August 10, 2007 at 9:54 AM

    you keep changing your design. i like it 🙂

    will try this recipe as soon as i get back home!

  • Reply
    Kalyn
    August 10, 2007 at 9:20 AM

    5 stars
    What a great photo of the chicken on the skewers. They look just delicious!

  • Reply
    Yogamum
    August 10, 2007 at 9:11 AM

    5 stars
    Those look amazing and I’m sure my kids would love them. You have a wonderful site and I look forward to trying your recipes!

  • Reply
    Andy
    August 10, 2007 at 7:21 AM

    5 stars
    These look really good! When you dip the chicken in the flour, does it make more of a batter? By the way, I think this should be Part 4 instead of 3. 🙂

    Hi Andy! Since the chicken is marinated in yogurt and get coated with it, it allows the flour to stick well – not exactly a batter formation, but a nice thick coating. Thanks for the tip, at least now I know someone is keeping count!

  • Reply
    Travis
    August 10, 2007 at 7:02 AM

    5 stars
    Great blog! Loved some of the recipes (such as Dahiwala Chicken and the Methiwala Anda Curry). However, I need my curries to be fiery/hot/spicy, and so I probably need to see if you have more of your mom’s recipes here 🙂

    Thanks! Most of my recipes are not quite hot; but if you need more heat, that’s nothing a few more fresh chillies can’t achieve!

  • Reply
    Amy
    August 10, 2007 at 2:03 AM

    5 stars
    These look like definite crowd pleasers! I’ll be making this for my next party.

    They sure are Amy, my guests can never get enough them! I’d suggest saving a few for yourself, lest they polish off the plate even before you can get to it!

  • Reply
    Sara
    August 9, 2007 at 3:04 PM

    5 stars
    They look absolutely wonderful! I’ll be trying these soon, thanks for the recipe.

  • Reply
    Poonam
    August 9, 2007 at 2:26 PM

    5 stars
    These look gorgeous, Meena!

  • Reply
    meeso
    August 9, 2007 at 2:20 PM

    5 stars
    Fried chicken’s…It looks soooo good!

  • Reply
    sandeepa
    August 9, 2007 at 11:31 AM

    5 stars
    These are lovely Meena. Want to pop one right now

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