Indian Cooking At Home: Murg Makhani (Butter Chicken)

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Indian Cooking At Home with Sunil Ghai

Are you ready to learn how to make easy, delicious Indian dishes worthy of any top notch Indian restaurant? Then don’t miss this fabulous  chef recipe series brought to you by I Love Cooking in association with Award Winning Chef Sunil Ghai, one Ireland’s most renowned Indian Chefs.

We will showcase a series of delicious Indian recipes which you can use our essential spice guide to help you along the way.

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One of the most popular dishes in Sunil’s restaurant  is Murg Makhani (Butter Chicken). This dish can be served with Pulao Rice. The chicken with its marinade can also be used for barbequed chicken tikka in the summer months.

Murg Makhani (Butter Chicken)


For the chicken:

  • 600g chicken thigh or breast meat, cut into chunks
  • 40g ginger & garlic paste
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp fenugreek leaf powder
  • ½ tsp green cardamom & mace powder
  • ¼ – ½ tsp salt
  • 80g strained plain yoghurt

For the sauce:

  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 6 cardamom pods
  • 3 black whole cardamom
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 green chilli, sliced
  • 2 tbsp fresh ginger, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2x tins (400g) plum tomatoes, blended
  • 100ml water
  • 60ml fresh cream
  • 1 tsp fenugreek leaf powder
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp fresh coriander, roughly torn
  • 2 tbsp butter


  1. Cut the chicken meat (thighs or breast) into large bite-size chunks. Put chicken in a medium sized bowl then add the rest of the marinade ingredients. Mix together well until the chicken is well coated. Cover bowl with clingfilm and leave to marinade in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.
  2. Pre-heat oven to 220°C / 200°C fan assisted then skewer the chicken pieces and bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes, until cooked through. Remove from the oven and brush with melted butter, keep aside. Tip: You can also cook the chicken on a barbeque.
  3. For the sauce, heat oil in a large heavy-based pan. Add the whole green and black cardamom and bay leaves and wait until they start to crackle. Add the onion, green chilli and ginger, then sauté for 1-2 minutes. Add the red chilli powder, garam masala and salt, stir to combine. Add the tomato and water. Stir well then lower heat to medium low and leave to simmer for 20-30 minutes.
  4. Use a stick blender to blend the sauce until smooth, or, carefully spoon into a blender and blend until smooth then return to the pan.
  5. Add the cooked chicken to the pan with the sauce, then add the cream, fenugreek leaf powder, honey and butter. Mix well until the butter has melted, simmer for 1-2 minutes to allow the chicken to heat through.
  6. Serve with a dollop of plain yoghurt and pulao rice.

Sunil Ghai's Essential Spice Guide, I Love Cooking videos, Sunil Ghai, Pickle Restaurant, Tiffin by sunil

About Sunil Ghai:

Renowned for his bold, contemporary cooking style Sunil Ghai was born in India and grew up in the prosperous city of Gwalior in Indeuwklooeia.

Former Corporate Chef of the Jaipur & Ananda Restaurant Group he is considered to be the leading Indian chef in Ireland and the recipient of an impressive array of awards including FOOD&WINE Magazine’s Chef of the Year 2009. 

He is currently at the helm of his own Venture at Pickle Restaurant and Eating House on Camden Street , Dublin 2. He has recently just opened Tiffin By Sunil with his wife Leena, a delicatessen with a difference located in Greystones, Co Wicklow.

He believes his success is down to the creative cooking talents of his father. According to Sunil “Many of my influences in the creation of my recipes come from my father He has a fantastic imagination when it comes to cooking and I have yet to taste food quite like it.” 

Sunil’s home city of Gwalior was an ideal starting point for his career as an aspiring chef he says.  Known as the city of music it boasts over 400 years of royal music patronage,  which also brought with it the best cuisine from every corner of the nation. Sunil’s first passion in life was cricket followed by his mother’s first love – cooking. “The wonderful thing about growing up in Gwalior was the eclectic influences all around you. It’s a melting pot of culinary delights from all over the many different regions of India,” says Sunil. 


  • Best chef 2006 food and wine magazine
  • Best chef 2008 food and wine magazine 
  • Best Indian restaurant 2006
  • Best world cuisine 2009 food and wine magazine . 
  • Best chef  in Ireland 2009 food and wine magazine 
  • Best ethnic restaurant 2010 by restaurant association if Ireland 
  •  Best innovation of seafood award
  • Best chef  in Dublin award by restaurant association of Ireland 2013 
  • Best chef in Ireland by Santa Rita restaurant association of Ireland 
  • 2013 
  • Best restaurant in Dublin 
  • Best restaurant ethnic restaurant  2014 food and wine 
  • Best world cuisine award 2015 Restaurant association of Ireland 





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