Bihari Kabob is a classic South Asian specialty known to be a melt in your mouth delicacy. It's meat that has been marinated in raw papaya, yogurt and meat tenderizer to completely break down and soften the meat with aromatic spices added then grilled to perfection. What makes this dish unique is that Bihari Boti is known to have a delicious smoked flavor from being cooked on a charcoal grill. We don't always have time for that or some of us just don't have a charcoal grill, so here I will show you how to get the charcoal smoke flavor without having to buy a grill. Made with either beef or chicken, this is by far one of my favorite kabobs for its moist and soft texture. A side of garlic naan (recipe here) or parathas and this is sure to be a delicious meal you'll crave over and over again!
Let's get started with the masala (spice mix)!
1 tbsp Meat Tenderizer
1 tsp Red Chili Powder
1/2 tsp Paprika
1 tbsp Cumin Powder
1 tbsp Coriander Powder
1 tsp Garam Masala
1 tbsp Poppy Seeds or 10 Cashews
1 tbsp Ground Black Pepper
1/2 tsp Ground All Spice (kabobchini, optional)
Grind/Mix all the spices together and store in an airtight jar.
*If you’re substituting with cashews for the poppyseeds, but would like to store the extra masala nut free, just add 3 to 4 ground cashews to the marinade below instead of the ground masala.
*If allergies are present for both cashew nuts and poppyseeds, just omit it all together.
Now let's move onto how to make these delicious kabobs!
1 lb Boneless Chicken
2 tbsp Gram Flour (besan)
2 tbsp Cream
2 Green Chilies
1/4 c. Fresh Green Papaya
1/2 c. Greek Yogurt
2 tbsp Fried Onion
1 tbsp Garlic/Ginger Paste
Salt (to taste)
1.5 tbsp Bihari Masala
-Mix and purée all the ingredients except the chicken, gram flour and cream.
-Now mix the puréed marinade with the cream and gram flour.
-Mix this mixture onto your Boneless Chicken and let it marinate covered for 1.5 to 2 hours or over night for best results.
-If marinating over night store in fridge covered.
-Pull out your marinated chicken an hour before cooking to allow it to come to room temp. (Ensures even cooking)
-Now add a small piece of foil into the middle of the bowl, add a heated charcoal, drop a drizzle of oil and cover the bowl and let the chicken be infused with the smoke.
*I use a small "bakhour" charcoal or you can use the small ones used for hookah. Just light up the little charcoal using your kitchen lighter until you hear it sizzle. Then just place the lit charcoal in a foil bowl and add your drizzle of oil and cover to trap and give your meat that smoke infused flavor without having to actually cook it on a charcoal grill.
-After about 10 to 15 minutes carefully remove the charcoal and foil and grill or bake your chicken on broil, basting with butter, ghee or oil until tender.
-If baking on broil, bake for 12 to 15 minutes flipping half way and basting with grease of choice.
*Smoke flavor can be done after cooking but I prefer when the meat is raw to ensure the smoke flavor gets cooked in heat so it doesn't over power the palette.
I love heating an empty cast iron at the same time then adding thinly sliced onions once its heated.
Top it with your cooked, moist chicken, some more raw onions and cilantro.
A nice squeeze of lemon or lime and enjoy! The bottom onions get caramalized against the hot cast iron and soften to give you two delicious textures of onions to accompany your ever so delicious chicken!