Monday, November 29, 2010

Tandoori Whole Chicken Roast / Bake for Thanksgiving - Indian Style!

Hope everyone had a fun and enjoyable Thanksgiving! and even more fun shopping on Black Friday!
Didn't do much shopping this year, instead went out to friend's place and then to the children's musuem! The kids had lots of fun for sure!:)
Did some cooking on Thanksgiving, but wanted to try out a whole chicken baked in the oven. Been wanting to give this a try for a very long time. I did try this out once and it didn't come out that good, the meat even got too dry.
This time around, I wanted to give it a try once again, and it did come out better or should I say much
It didnot dry out for sure, and even the color was good.

Prep: (Marinate the Chicken the night before)
The night before, I washed the chicken inside out. Wash it again with little turmeric and salt.
I kept the skin on, because I think it helps in keeping the moisture in. Slowly remove all the attachment between the skin and the muscle, to make like a pocket. This should be done all over, the chicken breasts, thighs and legs. Even the wings if possible.
With a fork, punch holes all over under the skin (not too many). This will let the masala to seep in to marinate.


1 cup yogurt
2 - 3 tbsp Shan Tandoori Chicken Masala powder ( or any masala you prefer)
salt to taste
2 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp coriander / dhaniya powder
1 tsp jeera / cumin powder
1 tsp garam masala powder
juice of 1 big lemon

Mix this into a paste. Taste for salt, as you cannot add later. Adjust any if necessary.
Rub this paste onto the chicken, under and over the skin. On the muscles and meat. Inside the hollow, that is inside the chicken hollow. The whole chicken should be covered with this masala.
Place the chicken in a tray and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

Baking: (the next day)

Remove and let the chicken come to room temperature (atleast 1 - 2 hours).
If you want, you can tie the legs together (so that they will stand up). I just placed metal skewers thru the legs.
The chicken did take a long time to bake. Preheat and Bake @ 400 degrees F.
It took about 2 to 2 1/2 hours in the oven. I baked until the internal temperature came up to 160 F.
Baked with a foil on top for about 1 hour, with a turn in between and another 1 hour or more with out the foil, but turning every 20 minutes. Check for temperature! Best way to see if its cooked.
Only once thru the whole process, I used excess of the masala marinade to brush on both sides of the chicken, that is after the first 1 hour.

It did come out beautifully baked and tasted great. Now I am confident to try it out more. This time I used a simple marinade and no stuffing too. Maybe next time I can try out a Indian-style stuffing too.
Sorry, didn't have much time to decorate the chicken and take pictures...had to do it quick as kids were waiting at the table!!!
So go ahead and give a try. If you are like me 'scared as to how it will come out'...I am sure experience will help for 'the next time'.

This is going to the Chicken Recipes event @ My Culinary Creations


  1. Lovely recipe! Looks awesome. I am bookmarking it.

  2. Looks brilliant and whole baked chicken how wonderful is that :)

  3. Very inviting and irresistible tandoori chicken roast..yumm!

  4. Beautiful Orange color...This whole chicken looks incredibly moist. with all the Tandoori spices...I love the coriander and cumin mix.. that gives superb aroma when baking.... i am noting this recipe for my next whole chicken :)

  5. Looks so yummy, the bright orange color makes is really tempting!

  6. That looks so tempting Smitha. I love baked whole chicken, but never had it the desi ishtyle :-)

  7. this is something hwihc i have to still try,,looks good,..:-)

  8. Looks like you had a great feast! I have seen quite a few roasted chicken on the web recently, this is one of the best out there..!

    US Masala

  9. mast hai dekh ne ke liya... I think I need to taste it to comment further... looking for ticket prices

  10. u r welcome to come and have a taste Anil...
    thanx guys!

  11. Just looking to the pic makes me hungry and drooling for the tandoori chicken.

  12. Had the privilege of carving and eating it...very very good..Thanks..Venu

  13. looks really looks good..i am sooo tempted to bite it.

  14. Loved the nice bright color... picture looks very tempting. Perfect for the holidays.

  15. Simply inviting n fabulous Chicken Bake n Roast.Yummy!

  16. I do prepare the same but not adding yogurt next time will do....urs look fab....
    very healthy way n yummy...

  17. Awesome baked chicken. I love it.

    Hamsamalini Chandrasekaran,

  18. just marinaded the chicken :) will bake tomorrow. Thanks for the recipe!

  19. Amazing recipe! the dish not only looked good but also tasted great!

  20. Good thinking and I can see where the taste is coming from. My take is to use just about all your ingredients (less chilli as mine is home produced and astronomically hot!) but I double up on yoghurt. Well, probably a bit more than that, marinade overnight - minimum 15 hours. Chuck everything into a large Creusot, then slow casserole for several hours on low heat (150C) basting every 40 minutes or so. If it start drying out too much add another dollop of yoghurt - mix it in. This dish is so easy to prepare and serve as the meat as it falls off the bone. Your detachment of skin from flesh is spot on - very rare to find anyone knowing this trick.

  21. thx for the recipe! can you please clarify these steps?

    Baked with a foil on top for about 1 hour, with a turn in between and another 1 hour or more with out the foil, but turning every 20 minutes. Check for temperature! Best way to see if its cooked.

    what do you mean by turn? a whole flip? so bake covered in foil for 30 minutes, then flip, bake for another 30 minutes under the foil, then take of the foil and bake for another hour, flipping the chicken every 20 minutes. Is that right?

  22. Turn to change the position of the chicken, as to not to get any hotspots. Alternatively you can even flip it over to get even cooking. This depends on the oven, and how it maintains the temperature. I bake it in a large sheet pan with a grill kind of thing inside it (you can see it in the second picture), on which the chicken sits. This allows the chicken to be cooked all around.
    Flipping it or turning it every 30 min and 20 mins allows even cooking and also crisping the skin on all sides.


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