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Maunika's Achari Murgh Tikka
Maunika Gowardhan, chef, author, and food writer
Excerpted from Tandoori Home Cooking: Over 70 Classic Indian Tandoori Recipes to Cook at Home by Maunika Gowardhan. Copyright © 2023. Available from Hardie Grant Publishing.
I’m such a fan of achari spice mix that all my books include recipes that celebrate it. Achari Murgh Tikka has always been a family favourite. I first ate it as a young girl when our family visited Khyber at Fort in Mumbai, where it always feels like a special evening and the food is delicious. The decor is old school with painted murals on the walls that are dimly lit by decorative chandeliers from the ’80s. Ghazals play in the background with chatter from the tables. It’s like going back in time to your safe space. The menu is limited and focuses primarily on the cuisine from the north-west frontier of India. The achari spice mix includes fennel, cumin, mustard and nigella seeds, all coarsely crushed, but the secret is definitely using mustard oil. I recommend keeping a small bottle in your storecupboard. The pungent, savoury flavour lends an intense taste to the tikka.