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The Misadventures of Mrs. B: Chicken Tikka Masala

Cook. Writer. Wife. Daughter. Sister. Friend. Klutz.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken Tikka Masala.  According to numerous sources, this is considered Britain's #1 dish.

And there's a reason why: It's freaking phenomenal.

The end result is more than worth any work involved, and it's really not very work-intensive.  It's one of only a few Indian dishes I've eaten and I have to wonder if anything will measure up.  I'm just so in love with it.  I'm also in love with the grilled naan I serve with it - but that's another post.

There are a few keys to the dish.  Make sure the onions are caramelized -  not just translucent.  Getting them nice and brown and sweet is the way to go.  You may be tempted to substitute a lower fat, or even non-fat, choice for the heavy cream.  Half and half or light cream would work well, but fat free half and half turns the texture rather grainy (I know this from experience).  Go for the highest level of fat you feel comfortable with.  If it's too spicy for you, you can always add a little yogurt while simmering.  Cilantro is normally used in this dish, but I can never seem to find any when I need it - if you have it on hand, add 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro to the final dish.  Since I've never used it I leave it out of this recipe.

Let's get to it so you can make it yourself, shall we? But be warned: Once you start making this, it's all over.  Just pencil it into your meal plans from here on out.  Rob has demanded that I make it once a week.  He actually referred to it as a "requirement".  

Darn...well, he's the husband.  I'm only following orders.

1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 tbs lemon juice
1 tbs minced ginger
1 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp garam masala*
2 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp salt
3 chicken breasts, trimmed and cubed

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.  Stir in chicken pieces, cover and refrigerate for at least one hour (I usually refrigerate for at least 3).

1 large white onion, thinly sliced
2 tbs butter or margarine
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 cup tomato sauce
1 cup heavy cream

Melt butter or margarine in large frying pan on medium heat.  Add onions and reduce heat to medium low.  Allow onions to cook slowly until carmelized, stirring frequently.

Once onions are carmelized, pour in tomato sauce, cream and spices.  Stir to combine.  Pour in all chicken and marinade.  Combine all ingredients, cover, and increase heat to medium high.  Simmer for 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked and tender.  Remove lid and simmer to thicken sauce, if necessary.

Serve over cooked rice and garnish with chopped parsley or cilantro and plain yogurt.

*Note: If you can't find garam masala (I purchased at a spice store), increase the cumin and cayenne in the marinade to 2 tsp each.  

As always...enjoy!

Linking up with A Southern Fairytale, Skip To My Lou33 Shades of Green, Simply Sweet Home, 504 Main & Designs by Gollum - check out all the great dishes and projects being linked up!

Do you like Indian food? What's your favorite dish?



Blogger Real Life Reslers said...

THAT. LOOKS. AWESOME. I told my husband he is required to try eating something other than sloppy joes and veggies drowned in cheese at least once a week. This looks like a good place to start! Can't wait to see the naan post. I've only seen that made once. It was on a TV show on pbs. The guy had a huge clay like oven thing. I hope your recipe doesn't involve that because I'm not building one LOL!!!

January 9, 2011 at 11:09 PM

Anonymous Alaina said...

Wow, that looks delicious!

January 10, 2011 at 9:57 AM

Anonymous cheryl@scrapaddict4sure said...

Almost reminds me of the Chicken Marsala from
Olive Garden thanks for sharing.

January 10, 2011 at 11:14 AM

Blogger Shell said...

Oh, I'm drooling!

January 10, 2011 at 12:59 PM

Blogger The Empress said...

Oh, drooling, here. Please, set some aside, and I'll be right over.

January 10, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Blogger Jenny said...

OK, this is what's for dinner tomorrow night. And I have fresh cilantro on the garden! Yum. Yum. Yum!

January 10, 2011 at 6:54 PM

Blogger LISA said...

I cannot wait to try this this weekend. Stay tuned.................

January 10, 2011 at 8:11 PM

Blogger Joey @ Big Teeth and Clouds said...

I've never eating anything like that. I'm not very adventurous with food. Does look good though!

January 10, 2011 at 8:48 PM

Blogger Rachel said...

I've always heard of this -- been dying to try it and now, your pictures, and your recipe--- I think that I must.

YUM! Thank you for linking this for me to find!

January 10, 2011 at 11:49 PM

Anonymous redkathy said...

Ooh that does look amazing and well worth the work! I'm definitely going to be trying this out Jen.

January 11, 2011 at 1:33 AM

Blogger Miel Abeille said...

When I was living in Manhattan, there was this dive Indian place that I was afraid to go into. My roommate swore it was amazing Indian food, so I took a chance. OMG! I had never eaten Indian before, and the Chicken Tiki Masala was divine! All this recipe needs is the cauliflower and potato dish they served with it. (I have no idea what it's called.)

I'm definitely trying this one! (BTW, your chocolate insanity cake with sour cream and a heavenly decadent frosting has been made several times over at my house.:)

January 11, 2011 at 7:36 AM

Blogger Liz said...

I have heard of the menu item "tikka masala" but honestly had no clue what it looks like or what it contains. But all those ingredients look very yummy!

January 11, 2011 at 8:19 AM

Anonymous Wendy from Wendys Hat said...

Yum! Looks great! You certainly can never go wrong with carmelized onions! Thanks for finding me as well. Happy to virtually share my lemons with you!

January 11, 2011 at 12:32 PM

Blogger Days at Buttermilk Cottage said...

Looks really good and another great use for Greek yogurt! Thanks for visiting at Buttermilk Cottage. Please come again!

January 11, 2011 at 1:08 PM

Blogger Sweet and Savory said...

This is delicious looking and I bet it tastes better.

January 11, 2011 at 1:19 PM

Blogger Lilianna Grace said...

Hi there! Thanks for stopping by Lavender Clouds and all your sweet comments. You're blog is pretty, I'm looking forward to checking it out!

January 11, 2011 at 2:01 PM

Blogger Katie @ This Chick Cooks said...

This sounds yummy!

January 11, 2011 at 3:03 PM

Blogger amanda persinger said...

Oh yumm...this sounds and looks really good!!

January 11, 2011 at 5:47 PM

Blogger Sarah said...

I want to try this recipe, but I have never cooked with heavy cream before! I wonder if regular milk would do?

January 11, 2011 at 5:54 PM

Blogger Real Life Reslers said...

p.s. do you have a facebook page for your blog?

January 11, 2011 at 8:25 PM

Blogger alissa said...

Wow, this sounds like something I would love! I am definitely adding this to my list to try soon. Thanks so much for linking up with Tasty Tuesdays!

January 12, 2011 at 12:41 PM

Blogger Adrienne said...

I have never heard of naan?? Am I alone here? All I know is I want some now!

January 17, 2011 at 2:38 PM

Blogger Holly said...

I am totally intrigued...I just copied the recipes...I'll let yo know how it goes!

January 23, 2011 at 12:17 AM

Blogger Ms Bibi said...

That is a great recipe and your pictures are just mouth-watering.

I am not a big fan of Indian food (spice issues0, but I love good Butter Chicken and Naan.

February 10, 2011 at 7:04 PM


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