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Spice Up Your Kitchen with a Creamy Butter Chicken Chinese Recipe

If you're looking for a delicious and easy-to-make dish, you can't go wrong with creamy butter chicken. Indulge in the rich and creamy flavours of this Chinese-inspired recipe, guaranteed to impress your loved ones. With a few key ingredients and some simple preparation, you'll have a delectable dish ready in no time.

A bubbling pot of creamy butter chicken simmers on a stovetop, surrounded by fragrant spices and herbs. A pair of chopsticks rests on the side, ready to serve

To make creamy butter chicken, you'll need a few key ingredients, including boneless chicken thighs, oyster sauce, salt, sugar, white pepper, and butter. You can also add other ingredients like garlic, ginger, and curry leaves to enhance the flavour of the dish. The chicken is marinated in a mixture of oyster sauce, salt, sugar, white pepper, and beaten egg, then fried until crispy. The creamy butter sauce is made by melting butter in a pan and adding garlic, ginger, and curry leaves, followed by evaporated milk. The fried chicken is then added to the sauce and mixed until fully coated.

Creamy butter chicken is a versatile dish that can be served with rice, noodles, or bread. You can also add vegetables like broccoli, carrots, or peppers to make the dish more nutritious. If you're feeling adventurous, you can even substitute the chicken with seafood like prawns or scallops for a different twist on the recipe. With a little creativity, you can make this dish your own and impress your guests with your culinary skills.

Key Takeaways

  • Creamy butter chicken is a Chinese-inspired dish that is easy to make and delicious to eat.
  • The key ingredients for the dish include boneless chicken thighs, oyster sauce, salt, sugar, white pepper, and butter.
  • Creamy butter chicken can be served with rice, noodles, or bread, and can be customized with vegetables or seafood.

Ingredients and Substitutions

A pot of creamy butter chicken simmers on a stove, surrounded by Chinese spices and ingredients. Substitution options are laid out nearby

Main Ingredients

To make a delicious creamy butter chicken recipe Chinese style, you will need the following main ingredients:

  • Chicken thighs or breasts: These are the main protein source for the dish. You can use boneless or bone-in chicken depending on your preference.
  • Butter: This is the key ingredient that gives the dish its rich and creamy texture. Use unsalted butter to control the salt content of the dish.
  • Garlic: Garlic adds a delicious flavour to the dish and is a must-have ingredient.
  • Milk or cream: This is what makes the dish creamy. You can use regular milk, heavy cream, evaporated milk, or condensed milk depending on your preference.

Dairy Alternatives

If you are lactose intolerant or vegan, you can use dairy alternatives in place of milk or cream. Here are some options:

  • Yogurt: You can use plain yogurt in place of milk or cream. It will give the dish a tangy flavour.
  • Coconut milk: Coconut milk is a great alternative to milk or cream. It will give the dish a slightly sweet and nutty flavour.
  • Almond milk: Almond milk is another great alternative to milk or cream. It will give the dish a slightly nutty flavour.

Spice Variations

You can customize the spices in your creamy butter chicken recipe to suit your taste. Here are some spice variations you can try:

  • Garam masala: Garam masala is a blend of Indian spices and is commonly used in butter chicken. It adds a warm and spicy flavour to the dish.
  • Cumin: Cumin adds a smoky and earthy flavour to the dish.
  • Turmeric: Turmeric adds a bright yellow colour to the dish and has a slightly bitter flavour.
  • Ginger: Ginger adds a slightly sweet and spicy flavour to the dish.
  • White pepper: White pepper adds a mild heat to the dish without overpowering the other flavours.

If you are looking to add seafood to your creamy butter chicken recipe, you can try using prawns or fish. Prawns will give the dish a slightly sweet and briny flavour, while fish will give the dish a flaky and delicate texture. Make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly to ensure that the seafood is cooked through.

Preparation Guide

A chef mixes spices into a pot of creamy butter chicken sauce, while a simmering pan of marinated chicken cooks on the stove

Marinating the Chicken

To make creamy Chinese butter chicken, you will first need to marinate your chicken. Combine oyster sauce, salt, sugar, white pepper and a beaten egg in a bowl, then add in your chicken pieces and thoroughly coat them. Cover the bowl and let the chicken marinate for at least 30 minutes to an hour. If you want to save time, you can marinate the chicken overnight in the fridge.

Making the Creamy Butter Sauce

While the chicken is marinating, you can start making the creamy butter sauce. Melt butter in a skillet over low heat and saute garlic, chilies and curry leaves until fragrant. Then, pour in the milk and mix until the sauce is reduced. Add in the fried chicken and mix well. If you want to add a tangy flavour to the sauce, you can also add a tablespoon of tomato sauce.

Final Cooking Steps

Once the chicken is marinated, preheat about 2 inches of vegetable oil in a pan for frying. Coat the chicken in corn flour and fry it until it is golden brown. Drain the fried chicken on paper towels to remove any excess oil. Then, add the fried chicken to the creamy butter sauce and mix well. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until the sauce thickens.

If you want to add seafood to this recipe, you can use prawns or scallops. Simply marinate them in the same marinade as the chicken and fry them in the same pan before adding them to the sauce.

This recipe has a prep time of around 30 minutes and a total cook time of 45 minutes. It serves 4 people and goes well with steamed rice. Enjoy!

Cooking Techniques

A pan sizzles as creamy butter chicken simmers in a Chinese kitchen. A chef stirs in fragrant spices, creating a rich, aromatic sauce

Frying the Chicken

The first step in making a delicious creamy butter chicken is to fry the chicken. To do this, you will need to coat the chicken in a flour mixture that includes tapioca starch and rice flour. This will help to create a crispy exterior on the chicken. Once the chicken is coated, you will need to fry it in olive oil until it is golden brown and crispy.

Sautéing Aromatics

The next step is to sauté the aromatics. This includes onions, garlic, and Thai chili. You will want to sauté these ingredients in a pan until they are fragrant and the onions are translucent. This will help to add depth and flavour to the dish.

Reducing the Sauce

The final step is to reduce the sauce. To do this, you will need to combine oyster sauce, chicken powder, and evaporated milk in a pan. You will then need to bring the mixture to a simmer and let it cook until it has reduced slightly. This will help to create a thick and creamy sauce that is perfect for coating the chicken.

If you are looking to add some seafood to your creamy butter chicken, you could try adding some prawns or scallops. Simply sauté the seafood in a pan with some olive oil and vegetables before adding it to the sauce. This will help to add a delicious seafood flavour to the dish.

Serving and Pairing

A steaming bowl of creamy butter chicken sits next to a plate of Chinese stir-fried vegetables, creating a colorful and appetizing pairing

Accompaniments

Creamy butter chicken is a delicious and filling dish that can be served with a variety of accompaniments. The most popular choice is basmati rice, which complements the flavours of the chicken and enhances the overall experience. You can also serve the chicken with naan bread, which is perfect for soaking up the creamy sauce.

If you are looking for something lighter, you can serve the chicken with a fresh salad. A simple cucumber and tomato salad with a light dressing will provide a refreshing contrast to the rich and creamy chicken.

To add a seafood twist to the dish, you can add prawns or scallops to the recipe. These seafood options pair well with the creamy sauce and add a unique flavour to the dish. If you are using scallops, sear them in a separate pan and add them to the chicken just before serving. For prawns, add them to the sauce a few minutes before the chicken is fully cooked.

Wine Pairing

When it comes to wine pairing, a light and crisp white wine is the perfect match for creamy butter chicken. A Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio will complement the flavours of the chicken and enhance the overall experience. If you prefer a red wine, go for a light-bodied Pinot Noir or Merlot.

It is important to note that creamy butter chicken is a rich and filling dish, so it is best to pair it with a wine that is not too heavy. A light and crisp wine will help balance out the richness of the dish and provide a refreshing contrast.

When serving creamy butter chicken, it is important to keep in mind the number of servings you are making. A standard serving size is around 200-250g of chicken per person, and this recipe will serve four people. Each serving contains approximately 400-450 calories, so keep that in mind if you are watching your calorie intake.

Storage and Reheating

A pot of creamy butter chicken sits on a stovetop, steam rising. A microwave hums in the background as a container of leftovers is heated

Once you have finished preparing your delicious creamy butter chicken, you may be wondering how to store and reheat it.

Shelf Life

Creamy butter chicken can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days. However, it is best enjoyed immediately, as the chicken loses its crispy texture once refrigerated.

Take Out

If you are taking your creamy butter chicken as a takeaway, make sure to store it in an airtight container and refrigerate it as soon as possible. It is recommended to consume it within a few hours of purchase.

Reheating

To reheat your creamy butter chicken, gently warm it up in the oven or on the stovetop. If the sauce has thickened, add a splash of milk to restore its creamy texture.

Seafood

If you are looking to switch things up, you can try adding seafood to your creamy butter chicken recipe. Prawns or scallops are a great addition to this dish and can be cooked in the same way as the chicken. Just make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

Cultural Context

A Chinese chef prepares a creamy butter chicken recipe in a traditional kitchen, surrounded by cultural artifacts and ingredients

When it comes to creamy butter chicken recipe Chinese, it is essential to understand the cultural context behind this dish. Butter chicken is a popular Indian dish that has been adapted to suit Chinese cuisine, resulting in a unique blend of flavours that is both creamy and spicy.

Chinese Influence on Butter Chicken

The Chinese influence on this dish can be seen in the use of boneless chicken thighs and chicken drumsticks, which are commonly used in Chinese cuisine. Additionally, the dish is often served as part of a zi char menu, which is a Chinese style of cooking that involves stir-frying ingredients in a wok.

Another way that Chinese cuisine has influenced butter chicken is through the use of creamy sauces. In Chinese cuisine, creamy sauces are often made using milk or cream and are used to balance out spicy or savoury flavours. This is reflected in the creamy butter sauce that is used in butter chicken.

Indian Roots and Adaptations

Butter chicken has its roots in Indian cuisine and is traditionally made using a tandoor oven. The chicken is marinated in a mixture of yoghurt and spices before being cooked in the tandoor oven, which gives it a smoky flavour and a crispy texture.

In the Chinese adaptation of this dish, the chicken is often deep-fried before being coated in the creamy butter sauce. This gives the chicken a crispy texture that complements the creamy sauce.

If you are looking to add a seafood twist to this dish, you could consider using prawns or scallops. These seafood options would work well with the creamy sauce and could be added to the dish towards the end of the cooking process.

Frequently Asked Questions

What ingredients are needed for a Chinese-style creamy butter chicken?

To make Chinese-style creamy butter chicken, you will need chicken, oyster sauce, salt, sugar, white pepper, beaten egg, flour, cornstarch, milk, and butter. You can also add vegetables like bell peppers, onions, and mushrooms to the dish for a more balanced meal.

How can I adapt a Malaysian butter chicken recipe to a creamier version?

To make Malaysian butter chicken creamier, you can add more evaporated milk or heavy cream to the sauce. You can also add a tablespoon of cornstarch to thicken the sauce. Instead of chicken, you can also use prawns or fish for a seafood twist.

What's the secret to the rich flavour in Singapore's butter chicken?

The secret to the rich flavour in Singapore's butter chicken is the use of garlic and curry leaves in the sauce. The chicken is first fried until crispy and then tossed in a creamy, garlicky butter sauce. You can also add a dash of chilli powder for some heat.

Can I use rice as a side for creamy butter chicken, and how should it be prepared?

Yes, rice is a great side for creamy butter chicken. You can prepare it by washing the rice and then boiling it in water until fully cooked. You can also add some salt and butter for added flavour.

What are some tips for achieving a crispy texture in butter chicken?

To achieve a crispy texture in butter chicken, you can coat the chicken pieces in a mixture of flour and cornstarch before frying them. You can also fry the chicken in hot oil until golden brown. Another tip is to let the chicken rest on a wire rack after frying to prevent it from getting soggy.

In a butter chicken sauce, how might one replace cream with milk without losing the richness?

To replace cream with milk in a butter chicken sauce, you can use whole milk or full-fat milk. You can also add a tablespoon of cornstarch to thicken the sauce. Another option is to use coconut milk for a dairy-free alternative. If you want to add seafood, you can use prawns or scallops for a delicious twist.