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Spice up your meal with a butterflied Masala chicken!


  • 1 whole chicken (about 1.5kg)
  • 1 tsp ground fenugreek
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 5 tbsp natural yogurt


  1. STEP 1

    To spatchcock the chicken, lay it on a board, breast-side down, and cut down either side of the backbone using kitchen scissors to remove it (this can be frozen to use in stock). Make two slashes in each side of the chicken breasts, and one in each of the legs and thighs. Flip the chicken over so it’s cut-side is down, then gently press down over the breasts using your hands to flatten it.

  2. STEP 2

    Toast the fenugreek, cumin and coriander seeds and the peppercorns in a dry frying pan over a medium heat until fragrant, about 5 mins – watch closely to ensure they don’t burn. Grind in a spice grinder or using a pestle and mortar, then combine with the turmeric, paprika and 2 tsp salt in a bowl. Stir into the yogurt.

  3. STEP 3

    Put the chicken in a roasting tin and pour over the spiced yogurt, rubbing it into the slashes and over both sides of the bird. Cover with baking parchment and chill overnight.

  4. STEP 4

    The next day, light the coals of the barbecue and, once the flames have died down, move them to one side of the grill. Put the chicken breast-side up on the side without coals, with the legs closest to the heat source. Close the lid, open the vents and grill for 30 mins.

  5. STEP 5

    Turn the chicken over, close the lid again and cook for another 30 mins. Move the chicken directly over the coals, breast-side up, cover and cook for 10 mins. Turn over and cook for another 10 mins, then check the temperature where the thigh attaches to the body – it’s ready when the probe reads 70C or the juices run clear. Remove to a tray, cover loosely and rest for 10 mins before carving.

This delicious Masala Spatchcock Chicken recipe is perfect for your next BBQ. The chicken is first spatchcocked, which means the backbone is removed so that the bird can be opened out flat. This helps it to cook evenly and more quickly, which is key when barbecuing.

The chicken is then marinated overnight in a combination of yogurt and a delicious blend of spices, which include fenugreek, cumin, coriander, black pepper, turmeric, and smoked paprika. The yogurt helps to tenderize the meat, while the spices add plenty of flavor.

When you’re ready to cook, you’ll need to heat up your barbecue until the coals are glowing. Once the flames have died down, you can move the coals to one side of the grill and place the chicken on the other side, with the legs closest to the heat source. This will ensure that the chicken cooks evenly and doesn’t burn.

You should grill the chicken for around an hour in total, turning it over halfway through. Once it’s cooked through (the temperature should read 70C at the thickest part of the meat), you can remove it from the grill and let it rest for 10 minutes before carving.

This Masala Spatchcock Chicken recipe is sure to be a hit with your friends and family. Serve it up with some rice, salad, and maybe a cold beer or two, and you’re good to go!