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Chicken Legs Marinated in Yogurt and Spices

This pungent cumin-and-coriander-spiked marinade is reminiscent of restaurant tandoori spicing—without the scary red dye. The yogurt helps the spices penetrate and tenderize the meat. Also try the marinade with pork medallions and lamb leg or blade steaks.

slideshow Amazing Chicken Recipes

  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 6

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  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely grated ginger
  • Sea salt
  • 2 cups plain low-fat yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • 6 pounds chicken legs, cut into drumsticks and thighs


  1. In a large bowl, using a wooden spoon, mash the garlic and ginger with 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt to a coarse paste. Stir in the yogurt and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, then add the cumin, coriander, crushed red pepper, paprika, turmeric, pepper and cinnamon.
  2. Remove the skin from the chicken thighs and using a sharp knife, make 3 to 4 deep slashes in the thighs and drumsticks on both sides. Add the chicken to the marinade, toss to coat and refrigerate overnight.
  3. Light a grill. Remove the chicken from the marinade and scrape some of it off. Lightly brush the chicken with olive oil and season with salt. Grill over a medium-high fire, turning occasionally, until lightly charred and the juices run clear when the chicken is pierced with a knife, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer to a platter and serve.
Contributed By Photo © Helene Dujardin Published June 2005

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