Chicken Tikka Masala

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Chicken Tikka Masala is definitely one of the most popular Indian dishes served at restaurants. And if you live in the UK, well, this is a national dish for you. CTM is one of those dishes that you can explore and redefine, eventually making it your own. I love making this dish as well as paneer tikka masala, however I make the PTM differently. Here is my version of a nice and creamy and flavorful CTM.

Ingredients For Marinade:

  • 1 small package of chicken tenderloins, or breasts, cut into chunks
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
  • 2 cups buttermilk or thick yogurt
  • 1 tsp oil
  • wooden skewers, soaked

Ingredients For Masala:

  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 inch cinnamon stick
  • 4 cloves
  • 4 green cardamom pods
  • 1 mace
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 onion diced
  • 1 can tomato puree
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 2 green chilis, diced
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp kasoori methi powder
  • salt to taste
  • water, for thinning
  • 1/4 cup cream

To Make:

In a bowl, add buttermilk and all spices. Stir and add chicken. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Turn oven to broil. Skewer the chicken and place over a dish so the chicken does not touch the bottom. Broil in oven till chicken turns a nice broiled color.

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In a pan heat oil. Add cinnamon through cumin seeds. Once they pop and a nice smell forms, add onions, green chilis, red and green peppers. Saute till golden brown. Add turmeric and stir. Add ginger garlic paste and stir till raw smell goes away. Add tomato puree and let simmer for 3-5 minutes. Remove from stove and add to a blender and puree till smooth.

Put back in pan, and add a little water to thin out the puree. Add kasoori methi powder, coriander powder, red chili powder, cumin powder, and salt to taste. Let simmer for another 5 minutes. Add chicken and cook till chicken is ready. Stir in cream, and serve hot.

*Chicken breast has a tendency to get rubbery when cooked in tomato sauce. For this reason, I used buttermilk to help with tenderizing. 

*As an alternative, you can also skewer onions and peppers

*Try topping with a sprinkle of garam masala

*Cream is optional

*This dish goes excellent served with naan

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