It seems like I’m taking y’all on a culinary tour this week, huh? First Japan and now India.
I’ve never made Indian food before. This is a first ever at Table for Two, folks. I must say, it turned out SO FLIPPING AWESOME. I could do back flips over the excitement of how well this turned out.
If you love Indian cuisine (although, some might beg to differ that tikka masala isn’t really full on Indian cuisine and it’s just the American, watered down version, kind of like Chinese takeout), you MUST give this a try.
Now that I can make tikka masala at home, I’m done, yes, DONE with going to Indian restaurants. I can’t take spicy very well so the only thing I ever get at an Indian restaurant is tikka masala (I know, I’m probably missing out on a lot of other great stuff). So since I can make it at home now, and a lot of it, this is going to be a regular at my house.
I thought Indian food, just like all the other Asian cuisines, would be hard to make. A lot of Indian dishes I’ve looked at contained all these ingredients that I really didn’t want to buy because 1. I didn’t know how often I’d use those ingredients because it seems like it was specific to that dish and 2. what if I didn’t even like the dish and bought a bunch of ingredients to just throw out? That’s not the case with this dish. The ingredients in tikka masala are basically staples in your pantry. The only thing that might not be (which isn’t in mine) is the garam masala. But don’t fret! It’s not hard to find. If you can’t find it, you can always order it off Amazon :)
Adapted from Sweet Pea’s Kitchen
Chicken Tikka Masala
Yield: 4 servings
For the marinade:
1 cup plain yogurt
1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 tsp. black pepper
1 tbsp. fresh ginger, minced
1 tsp. salt
3 boneless chicken breasts or 8 chicken tenderloins, cut into bite-sized pieces
For the sauce:
1 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. garam masala
1 cup tomato sauce
1 cup heavy cream
- In a large bowl, combine yogurt, lemon juice, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, ginger, and salt. Stir in chicken, cover, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Saute garlic and jalapenos for a minute then stir in the cumin, paprika, salt, and garam masala. Then gently stir in the tomato sauce and heavy cream. Simmer on low until sauce thickens, about 20 minutes.
- While the sauce is simmering, in another skillet, add your chicken but discard the marinade. An easy way to just get the chicken pieces out is to use a slotted spoon and the extra marinade will drain between the slots.
- Cook the chicken until juices run clear, about 7-10 minutes.
- Add the cooked chicken to the sauce mixture, stir to combine, and simmer for 10-15 minutes more.
- Transfer to serving platter and serve over white rice or garlic naan (if you want to grab some from the store or find a good recipe for it).
Julie’s notes: If you’re debating whether or not to marinade your chicken overnight or 4 hours and how it’ll affect the taste: I marinaded mine for 4 hours and it turned out perfectly fine. Also, you can certainly make this more spicy if you like spice. For a spicier sauce, add in 1 tsp. of cayenne pepper and the whole jalapeno. I also didn’t grill my chicken. If you prefer to grill your chicken, you can do so, but I just went ahead and cooked it in another skillet after taking it out of the marinade.
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