Malai chicken tikka sliders (mini burgers) are the perfect food for a fun weekend with friends and just as good to have on busy weeknights when its just the two of you. Quick, delicious and filling, this subtly flavored malai chicken tikka slider is topped with the homemade goodness of pickled veggies and tomato salsa. Drizzle a variety of spreads, a slice of cheese and something green and you have the recipe for a perfect finger food/ game day food/brunch food/weeknight in food!
I have been meaning to do this for the longest time. Tell you about this burger that is. I have had many many burgers in my life. Yes, I know it isn’t something that I should be proud of or even tell the public (shhhh), but here I am, putting my big foot in my rather large mouth, again. (read:rolling my eyes at myself) I have no idea why burgers have suddenly gained such a bad reputation. So the burgers are loaded in calories. Is that the end of the world?? Isn’t that last piece of cheesesake you always, always reach for calorie ridden? And how about people who love desserts? They can’t stop eating sweet nothings anymore than I can stop myself from stuffing my face with this burger.
Fact : I eat KFC burgers when I am too tired or when its been a crazy day.
Truth: I settle with a plate of Hot wings rather than burger.
Most burgers are dry. Most burger are the same old ground meat patty or unhealthy fried chicken. Most have the boring lettuce, tomato. And nothing in terms of flavor or texture. So yes, I do eat burgers but its generally a “last resort” dinner option for me. But THIS slider/ burger here is a totally different story.
With the cricket match under way and Holi and Easter celebrations knocking on the door, there has never been a better time to make these. Set up a gorgeous DIY Burger table along with the best beer and mocktails you can afford. Have the ingredients tastefully placed on the table and ask your man (and his buddies) to grill up those buns!! Have the guests build their own burgers according to their taste. What could be better than home made sliders and good beer with buddies??!! Nothing in my opinion.
Yes, I know most of us want to make traditional Indian fare for Holi. But seriously what about those who dont have the time or patience?? Or simply have some friends coming over and need something easy, quick and delicious to serve without it being fussy or fancy? These sliders are the perfect answer.
As much as I LOVE Tandoori Chicken ( and I DO, SO much), when it comes to burger/ sliders, I opt for less over powering meat. Malai chicken tikka is perfect! Why?? Its juicy, succulent, mildly flavored, takes 15 mins to make and leftovers can be had as it is on the side. Or simply cut them up and use in a nice cold chicken salad. Make burritos, wraps, add in omlettes, on falafels the options are endless!! I especially LOVE them with Acharri chicken tikka while entertaining.
I marinate boneless chicken pieces overnight in yogurt, cream, spices and dried fenugreek. Just grill for 12 mins till done. The chicken is juicy and tender (thanks to the yogurt) and creamy yet subtly spiced (thanks to the cream and seasonings). You can of course, buy the tikkas from your favorite restaurants if you don’t have the time.
I top these with a whole gamut of things here for two reasons:
1. coz I love contrasting textures and flavors
2. coz its fun!
Pickled veggies (carrot, cucumber and onion) are usually in my fridge and there is no reason why you shouldn’t keep a jar of it too. Its so delicious, you will end up adding it to anything and everything. I have had it in cheese spread and fresh bread, layered on chicken tikka wrap, added to fried rice like a kimchi, or just served as is along with some spicy curry. It stays good a long time thanks to the vinegar and the subtle flavor from pepper, ginger, bayleaf and cloves make the veggie fresh. Next i added some tomato salsa. Again, its a lot cheaper and healthier to make your own salsa. I left the tomatoes chunky for this dish. Sauces add a lot of interest and flavor to the burger. Don’t skimp on that.
Yes, It was be a huge burger. Yes, it will look huge. But trust me, you will find a way to eat it..messy be damned! Make them this weekend and enjoy your life with this delicious stacked malai chicken tikka slider. Burgers and chilled beer. The art of slow living , this is it.
- Burger Buns/ Pavs/ Brioche bun - as needed, typically 1 per person.
- Malai Chicken tikka - about 10 pieces, pulled thin.
- Homemade pickles - as needed
- Homemade tomato salsa - as needed ( 1 tbsp per burger)
- Cheese slice - 1 per burger
- Spinach & lettuce - to layer
- Tomato sauce / hot sauce - as needed
- Mustard sauce
- Mint mayonnaise
- Start by pulling the chicken tikka as thin as you like. You can make it yourself or use the ones bought from a restaurant. Just make sure the chicken is fresh and tender.
- For the pickles:
- Cut cucumber, carrot, onions into long thin slices.
- In a sauce pan, pour ½ cup of vinegar. Add 2 tbsp sugar, 4-5 whole black pepper, ginger ½ inch, 3 cloves. Let it come to a boil and simmer for 5-8 mins.
- Let it cool down. Then add the veggies, store in fridge for as long as needed. Let it soak for atleast 4-5 hours before using. This is best if done before hand.
- For the tomato salsa:
- Use the recipe mentioned above.
- For assembling the sliders:
- Grill the pav /buns till crisp. Cut into half horizontally.
- Add some spinach/ lettuce to the bottom half. Spread mayonnaise.
- Add as much chicken as you wish. I really load it up.
- Add some hot sauce, mint mayo, mustard sauce on the chicken. Mix well.
- Add a slice of your favorite cheese.
- Pile some pickle on top, add the tomato salsa. Load up more pickled onion.
- Top with the other half of the bun.
- EAT IMMEDIATELY!!!