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Old 12th May 2014, 11:43   #1246
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Why is it that when I cook chicken with bone the result is a soft tasty chicken but when I cook chicken breasts (boneless) they get hard like rubber. I know I need to stop cooking at the right time else it starts getting rubbery but this doesn't happen with the chicken w/ bones.

Also, the chicken with bone continues to be soft on the 2nd or 3rd day but the chicken breasts get rubbery the very next day only.

Can anyone relate to this?
Chicken with bones is normally red meat. It does not harden up under prolonged cooking and remains juicy. On the other hand the breast is "White Meat". It needs minimum cooking, else it goes hard. The best way to cook breast is to pound it thin, about 5-8mm. Grill or fry it on one side till the colour starts changing from red to white. Flip it over and cook for about 3 minutes more. Take it off the pan. The chicken will cook for some time, so take it off before it is fully cooked.

Properly made, the breast will remain soft and moist, over cooked it will become rubbery.
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Old 12th May 2014, 11:56   #1247
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Chicken with bones is normally red meat.....
Properly made, the breast will remain soft and moist, over cooked it will become rubbery.
What do you mean red meat? I thought chicken was white meat irrespective of it being with bones or not, I don't know much about it though.

And by pounding do you mean like physically pound it until it becomes thin? What I at times do is cut the breast horizontally so that it becomes more like fillet which I fry in 1 tsp of oil and it turns out good.

Let me share my dilemma with you and maybe you can help.

My wife wouldn't eat chicken breasts because they aren't as soft and juicy as the chicken w/ bones is even when both are marinated and cooked in the same manner. However, eating bone-wala chicken is a little messy and that doesn't work very well in office cafeteria, at least for me.

So I have to come up with a recipe that doesn't involve more than 2-3 tbsp of oil for 500gms of chicken. This particular recipe of mine was good till the time I had to cook chicken breasts in it.

So any pointers on 2-3 recipes that I can try with chicken breasts that doesn't involve too much oil (is healthy) and can still turn out juicy enough for my wife to find it delicious. I eat chicken everyday in lunch which is why I need something that's healthy.
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Old 12th May 2014, 12:02   #1248
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To all my Bangalore boys - past or present:

Where do you get goat meat here? Everywhere you go, all you find is sheep. It is simply not the same. The mutton does not taste anything like home.

Am I asking the question in the wrong discussion? If yes, Mods please delete.
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Old 12th May 2014, 12:12   #1249
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However, eating bone-wala chicken is a little messy and that doesn't work very well in office cafeteria, at least for me.
Supermarkets like Auchan generally have boneless leg pieces. You can try that out.
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Old 12th May 2014, 12:15   #1250
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What do you mean red meat? I thought chicken was white meat irrespective of it being with bones or not, I don't know much about it though.

And by pounding do you mean like physically pound it until it becomes thin? What I at times do is cut the breast horizontally so that it becomes more like fillet which I fry in 1 tsp of oil and it turns out good.

Let me share my dilemma with you and maybe you can help.

My wife wouldn't eat chicken breasts because they aren't as soft and juicy as the chicken w/ bones is even when both are marinated and cooked in the same manner. However, eating bone-wala chicken is a little messy and that doesn't work very well in office cafeteria, at least for me.

So I have to come up with a recipe that doesn't involve more than 2-3 tbsp of oil for 500gms of chicken. This particular recipe of mine was good till the time I had to cook chicken breasts in it.

So any pointers on 2-3 recipes that I can try with chicken breasts that doesn't involve too much oil (is healthy) and can still turn out juicy enough for my wife to find it delicious. I eat chicken everyday in lunch which is why I need something that's healthy.
Thigh muscles, neck and wings, of chicken are Red Meat. Breast are White Meat. That is why in Western countries the breast meat is much more expensive. (I think the term came from the appearance of the cooked meat, breasts are white and rest red)

You first make fillets of around 10mm thick by cutting. Then you pound it with a mallet or any other blunt object to 5-7mm thick. Pounding breaks fibers and makes the breast softer. To make it juicy, the breast has to be under cooked. Just fry/grill it till it starts turning white (upto two thirds from bottom). Then flip it over and wait for the white to join. It should not take more than five minutes on fry pan, or 7 minute on a grill. Remember that the breast will still be cooking when you take it off heat, hence under cook it, wait for five to ten minutes, and will be cooked perfectly. Please note that the btiming depends on the quality of the chicken and the thickness. You may have to experiment a bit to get it perfect.

My standard marinade is oil, chilly powder, garlic, salt and lemon juice. You may add other spices to your taste. Let it marinate for at least two hours. At times I prepare a batch and keep it in the refrigerator for a couple of days. The longer it stays the better it becomes.

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Old 12th May 2014, 12:26   #1251
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@fine69.

Try this recipe.
Get chicken with bones.
In a pressure cooker put the chicken pieces preferably large ones. Add garlic pods, pepper, salt, coriander and a fist full of Channa Dal. Just enough water to prevent things from burning. That would mean about 1 cm standing water height.

After 2 whistles switch off the stove and remove the whistle . BE CAREFUL.

Let it cool.

Remove the meat from the bones.

Blend everything (without bones ) in a mixie.

Shape them into cutlets and fry or simply toast them.

You can also just use this as a sandwich spread.
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Old 12th May 2014, 13:34   #1252
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To all my Bangalore boys - past or present:

Where do you get goat meat here? Everywhere you go, all you find is sheep. ...
Go to your neighbourhood butcher / mutton shop, and ask for Meke Mamsa (maykay, not meek; sheep is kuri). He will either have it, or will get for you. Possibly you never asked, or they didn't understand you. You can also check with Auchan - they usually sell goat meat.


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Old 12th May 2014, 13:40   #1253
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Go to your neighbourhood butcher / mutton shop, and ask for Meke Mamsa (maykay, not meek; sheep is kuri). He will either have it, or will get for you. Possibly you never asked, or they didn't understand you. You can also check with Auchan - they usually sell goat meat.


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Thanks for that.

Neighborhood shop only sells sheep. Will check at Auchan.

What about Johnson market?
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Old 12th May 2014, 14:01   #1254
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@pratyush6 - I regularly buy goat meat from the butcher near Ayyappa temple, Banaswadi, next to the fish stall. He sells both goat and sheep meat.
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Old 13th May 2014, 13:12   #1255
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@fine69.

Try this recipe.
Get chicken with bones....
Add a few masalas while blending and this becomes the recipe for shammi kebab!

I wonder though, how do these take away restaurants get the boneless chicken to be so juicy. Their tikkas are to die for, I've tried marinating boneless chicken in spices + greek yogurt for 12-14 hrs but the end result is never so juicy.
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:03   #1256
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Add a few masalas while blending and this becomes the recipe for shammi kebab!

I wonder though, how do these take away restaurants get the boneless chicken to be so juicy. Their tikkas are to die for, I've tried marinating boneless chicken in spices + greek yogurt for 12-14 hrs but the end result is never so juicy.
To get juicy boneless chicken you have to marinate it with salt initially, and then with curd. That will ensure that the chicken does not dry out while cooking. Another tip is to never over cook chicken.
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:15   #1257
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To get juicy boneless chicken you have to marinate it with salt initially, and then with curd. That will ensure that the chicken does not dry out while cooking. Another tip is to never over cook chicken.
Do you mean that I marinate it with salt only first (if yes, for 3-4 hrs?) and then marinate it in curd or do it together?

Currently I marinate it with salt, curd, ginger-garlic paste and other spices such as red chilli powder, coriander powder (or chicken masala powder) etc. all at one go.
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:51   #1258
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Do you mean that I marinate it with salt only first (if yes, for 3-4 hrs?) and then marinate it in curd or do it together?

Currently I marinate it with salt, curd, ginger-garlic paste and other spices such as red chilli powder, coriander powder (or chicken masala powder) etc. all at one go.
I used to do it your way, but then that required at least 24 hours (more like 2 days) of marination to yield a good result. Then I saw Mr. Gill do it salt & lemon first, followed by curd after 1 hour. I tried that and it seemed to speed up the process.

If you have the time (1 to 3 days), then mix up salt, lime, red chilly powder, garlic and any other spice you want, and let it marinate. This will give you the best tasting meat. If you are short of time use the step wise process, and you will get very good results.
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Old 15th May 2014, 15:02   #1259
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... I wonder though, how do these take away restaurants get the boneless chicken to be so juicy. ... I've tried marinating boneless chicken in spices + greek yogurt for 12-14 hrs but the end result is never so juicy.
Normal marinade that we do at home contributes to flavor only. The longer any meat is cooked to reduce chewiness (too long, and it will produce fibrous tikkas), the more the water that evaporates. The yoghurt you are using serves to seal the surface of the tikkas and helps to keep the liquids in, provided one uses some fat to facilitate the sealing.

The key is to unravel the protein strands (which are tightly wound or folded at normal temperature) while marinating, so that the cooking time is drastically reduced (heat in cooking also does the same). For this one uses a 'meat tenderiser' - raw papaya, ginger, onion, commercial papain (comes from raw papaya) based powder etc. - in the marinade. Different restaurants use different stuff. As the protein strands unravel, they squeeze out the liquids. The optimum cooking point is when the protein strands unravel but the liquids are not pushed out of the body of the meat.

One can make out the restaurants that don't tenderize while marinating - their stuff is usually dry, fibrous, overcooked and leathery. Many in fact murder it by cooking twice to reduce the final service time - half cooked and kept aside, then cooked again to finish. This produces leather and bones, or hard rubber, or thermocol - take your pick.
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Old 16th May 2014, 12:21   #1260
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I wonder though, how do these take away restaurants get the boneless chicken to be so juicy. Their tikkas are to die for, I've tried marinating boneless chicken in spices + greek yogurt for 12-14 hrs but the end result is never so juicy.
WHAT!?
90% (or perhaps even higher number) of the restaurants especially the take away breed know absolutely zilch about cooking the chicken breast pieces.

Almost everywhere I see is the thready fibrous extremely white colored meat after you have licked off the vibrant colored (sometimes red, sometimes green, sometimes off-white) masala coating.

The key way remaining 10% make the tikka's has less to do with marination (of course it matters to improve the taste) but to do with the cooking style. Low heat. The tandoor/grill/apparatus must use glowing embers of charcoal at some distance away from the meat. There should not be any flame.

The 90% of restaurant get this wrong, because they use the same tandoor for roti/naan which requires ultra high temperature and the flames licking the rotis.

You want to replicate the same stuff at home? Get a slow cooker OR
Stop cooking (whether on grill or on tawa or on flame) as soon as the internal temperature of meat reaches 75 deg C. How do you check this? Get a temperature probe. Once you have cooked quite a lot of times - you will get a good judgement of how long, how much meat, how high the gas flame, how far away from flame etc - all hallmarks of experienced chefs at the remaining 10% of the restaurants.
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