21 January 2011

Tikka Masala

I haven't eaten a lot of Indian food, but I have enjoyed everything that I have tried. I've also been wanting to try making some at home, but it's one of those things that I keep forgetting about, until, well, I don't forget about it.

So I got off my butt, browsed around on the good ole' internet starting with some of my go to blogs. Within seconds I found 100's of gorgeous sounding recipes, and it took me about an hour to narrow down which one I would select. I figured I'd start out with a classic, Tikka Masala from Joelen's Culinary Adventures who adapted the recipe from Cook's Illustrated. Sign me up!

It might look like a lot of ingredients, but you should have most on hand, with the exception of garam masala which you should be able to find in the spice rack of most grocery stores. Except the commissary apparently. But that's for another day.

About this recipe. It makes a TON. Sure, it helped that I served it with that delicious Naan I shared with you the other day. I also served it with garlic rice, and both of those helped spread out the meal for a couple of days. That was perfectly fine with us because it was delicious. So much flavor and texture! It made for great leftovers that we looked forward to eating at many consecutive meals.

Try it, I think you'll like it - That means you too MOM!

Speaking of my mom, I really think she should be leaving me more comments. She reads my blog often and will call me with a request for Reader Request Monday's, or verbally comment about my blog. Don't get me wrong, I love that she calls me and gives me all that information. But for the past year and a half, I've been trying to encourage her to leave me comments for the world to see. Am I wrong? Wouldn't you want your mom leaving you little public notes of praise and encouragement and suggestions and help? I thought so. Hint, Hint, Hint, Mom, Hint....


Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken Tikka
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp table salt
  • 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of fat (about 3-4 lbs)
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 medium garlic cloves , minced
  • 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
Masala Sauce
  • 2 - 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion , diced fine
  • 2 medium garlic cloves , minced
  • 2 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 4 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp table salt
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves (optional)
  1. For the chicken, combine cumin, garlic powder, cayenne, and salt in small bowl. Sprinkle both sides of the chicken with spice mixture, pressing gently so mixture adheres. Place chicken in a baking dish, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 to 60 minutes.
  2. In large bowl, whisk together yogurt, oil, garlic, and ginger. After the seasoned chicken has 'marinated' for 30-60 minutes in the fridge, pour the yogurt mixture over the chicken and toss to fully coat both sides. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 6-8 hours or overnight.
  3. For the sauce, heat oil in medium sized saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and cook, stirring frequently, until light golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, tomato paste, and garam masala; cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add crushed tomatoes, sugar, and salt; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. At this point, allow the sauce to cool. Transfer the sauce into a storage container, cover and then refrigerate overnight.
  4. The next day, remove the chilled sauce from the fridge and heat up in a large dutch oven over medium heat. Stir in cream and return to simmer. Remove pan from heat and cover to keep warm.
  5. While sauce simmers, adjust oven rack to upper-middle position (about 6 inches from heating element) and heat broiler. Remove the chicken from the fridge and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Place the yogurt coated chicken on the parchment lined baking sheet. Broil chicken until thickest parts register 160 degrees on instant-read thermometer and exterior is lightly charred in spots, 10 to 18 minutes, flipping chicken halfway through cooking.
  6. Let chicken rest 5 minutes, then cut into 1-inch chunks and stir into warm sauce (do not simmer chicken in sauce). Adjust seasoning with salt if needed. Before serving, stir in cilantro into the sauce or garnish with cilantro if using.


  1. All this food looks soooooooo yummy.I will be trying most of them.Thanks for all you put into it!

  2. Gotta be honest KC, I've always wanted to try Indian food, but have been a little apprehensive. You have inspired me. Knowing it's easy to make myself is a reassurance. And how can one go wrong with Naan and garlic rice, I wonder?

    P.S. Yes, I actually could do with some refills. Thanks, Ruthie! xoxoLisa

  3. I know, that's how I felt about Indian food! I can't wait to try more!