Indian-spiced chicken drumsticks with cucumber-mint yogurt

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Ingredients for marinade

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger root
  • 2 tsp each ground cumin, ground coriander and medium curry powder
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp grated lemon zest
  • ½ tsp each paprika, salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp each cayenne pepper and cinnamon
  • 12 chicken drumsticks (about 2¼ lbs/1 kg; remove skin if desired)


Whisk together all marinade ingredients in a small bowl. Pour over chicken in a glass baking dish or in a large, heavy-duty, zip-top bag. Make sure chicken is evenly coated with marinade. Marinate in refrigerator for at least 3 hours or overnight.

Arrange chicken pieces in a single layer on a foil-lined baking sheet. (Discard extra marinade.) Bake at 375 F for about 35 minutes, depending on size of drumsticks, or until no longer pink in the centre. Turn on the broiler (leave chicken on middle oven rack) and broil for about 2 minutes until chicken is lightly browned. Serve hot with yogurt sauce on the side.

Ingredients cucumber-mint yogurt sauce (Raita)

1 English cucumber, peeled and grated (Important: See cooking tip)
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
2 tbsp minced fresh mint leaves
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp honey
½ tsp grated lemon zest
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp each ground cumin and freshly ground black pepper


Combine all sauce ingredients in a medium bowl. Mix well. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Try to make the yogurt sauce about an hour before serving, so the ingredients have time to mingle.

Cooking Tip: The grated cucumber must be well drained (squeezed dry) before adding to the yogurt, otherwise the sauce will be very runny. Using a clean tea towel for this purpose works best! Lay the towel flat, mound the grated cucumber in the middle, then fold up the sides as if you’re making a pastry bag. Twist, wring and squeeze the towel over the sink. You’ll be amazed at the amount of liquid that will drain away!

For best results, marinate chicken overnight if possible.


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