The Unique Broiling Method For Successful Tandoori Chicken At Home

Marinated in creamy yogurt and aromatic spices, tandoori chicken is a lip-smacking South Asian classic. The yielding texture of the juicy chicken paired with its aromatic crispy edges — traditionally charred in the fierce heat of a street food tandoor — make this fragrant dish a powerhouse of flavor. Achieving that same scorched exterior at home can be a little tricky, but that doesn't mean it's totally out of reach. To make this prized protein from the comfort of your kitchen, you'll need to mimic the fiery characteristics of a blisteringly hot tandoor by broiling your chicken at a super-high temperature.

There are three distinct textural elements to the perfect tandoori chicken: Firstly, you have the succulent chicken in the middle that's juicy, soft, and deliciously moist. This is surrounded by a tangy, yogurty layer, and finally, that all-important smoky crust. To achieve that characteristic charred exterior that's full of craggy edges and jagged pockets of concentrated flavor, you need to amp up the heat to crisp up the outside without overcooking the center. The best way to do this is to cook the chicken in a moderate oven until it's almost done before cranking up the heat on the broiler to attain golden edges that are speckled with charred hotspots.

This unique broiling method is outlined in this outstanding recipe for tandoori chicken, making it a great place to begin if you're looking to try your hand at making this mouthwatering dish at home.

How to finish tandoori chicken under the broiler

Getting that perfect outer texture depends on how you treat your tandoori chicken when it's almost cooked through. At that point, you'll want to remove it from the oven, turn the broiler on as high as it gets, and while the oven comes to the correct temperature, baste your chicken on all sides with butter or oil. This light coating of extra fat will add a further layer of flavor and encourage the exterior of the chicken to crisp up when you reintroduce it to the intense heat of the broiler.

Place the chicken as close to the broiler as possible — without it touching — to imbue it with a smoky aroma and create those delicious blackened edges. Remember to turn the chicken over as it roasts to encourage an even cook — the marinade should darken, creating a crusty surface, and only the periphery of the protein should become charred. After about 10 minutes of broiling, you should be left with juicy chicken that has a smoky profile and yummy, crunchy edges.

Once you master the art of broiling your tandoori chicken, you can expand your horizons and experiment with this technique for making tandoori lamb chops and even tandoori fish. To add some contrast to your meal, serve your tandoori meat with salad and a cooling cucumber raita for a high-protein lunch, or add some naan for a filling, satisfying dinner.