Traditional North Indian tandoori chicken is skewered and baked in a tandoor (a clay oven powered by fire). As juice drips from the meat onto the coals, the smoke adds even more flavour to the chicken – pretty similar to what happens on a braai. Skinless chicken pieces work best for this meal, as the meat can absorb the marinade better when the skin isn’t in the way. A few drops of red food colouring makes little difference to the flavour but gives the meat that distinctive bright colour of ‘authentic’ tandoori chicken


  • 1.5 kg chicken pieces (like thighs and drumsticks)
  • 4 cloves garlic (crushed)
  • ginger (equal in volume to the garlic)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tot masala spice
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tot vegetable oil
  • ½ tot lemon juice
  • 1 cup plain yoghurt


  1. Prepare the chicken pieces by removing and discarding the skins.
  2. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients except the chicken and stir well. You will notice that the marinade has a pink colour; this is normal. Now add the chicken, making sure all the pieces are generously coated on all sides with marinade. You can use your recently washed hands to rub the marinade really well onto and into the meat.
  3. Cover the bowl and marinate overnight in a fridge.
  4. The next day, take the bowl out and bring the chicken to room temperature before braaing (it takes about 1–2 hours to lose the chill).
  5. Braai over medium-hot coals in a hinged grid until the chicken is done. This should take about 20–25 minutes. Take it easy and start your grid off quite high, as the marinade might burn if the coals are too hot.
  6. Serve with freshly made naan bread and coriander