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Chicken Tikka Masala

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Chicken Tikka Masala is an extremely popular Indian stew that’s made with chunks of tangy grilled chicken all wrapped up in a creamy, spicy tomato sauce.


In case you’re not familiar, Chicken Tikka Masala is an extremely popular Indian stew that’s made with big chunks of tangy grilled chicken all blanketed in a deliciously creamy, spicy tomato sauce.

Of course, there must exist about 2 million different recipes and methods for making Chicken Tikka Masala out there, and a lot of them are probably much closer to the authentic Indian dining experience than mine will ever be. Again — I’m not Indian, so I don’t claim to be a specialist at cooking Indian food…

Still, I think that this version is VERY tasty, super easy to make at home and is close enough to the real deal that it’ll have you want to stay in and make your own, from time to time.


Chicken Tikka Masala
Chicken Tikka Masala is an extremely popular Indian stew that's made with chunks of tangy grilled chicken all wrapped up in a creamy, spicy tomato sauce.

Ingredients
The chicken and marinade

  • 4 large boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into 1-1/2" to 2" pieces (about 1.25kg | 2.75lbs)
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 6 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 2 tbsp minced fresh ginger

The spice mix

  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1-1/2 tsp salt I use Himalayan salt
  • 1-1/2 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1-1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground white pepper

The sauce

  • 2 tbsp ghee storebought or homemade
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 large 28oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup heavy cream (or full fat coconut milk)
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro or parsley plus more for garnish

Instructions

  1. Make the spice mix by mixing all the spices together in a small bowl.
  2. Then, in a large mixing bowl, combine the chicken, yogurt, lime juice, garlic, ginger, and about half the spice mix you just made. Toss until all the pieces of chicken are completely coated in the yogurt mixture and refrigerate for at least an hour, or up to overnight.
  3. Melt the ghee in a sauté pan set over medium-high heat; add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until it's slightly softened and golden, about 3 minutes.
  4. Reduce heat to medium-low then stir in the remaining spice mix. Add the crushed tomatoes and water and bring the sauce to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover partially and simmer the sauce until slightly thickened, about 25 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, cook the chicken: set your oven to broil and place a grill in the top position. Thread the pieces of chicken onto metal skewers and place the kabobs across a roasting pan. Try to get the skewers to rest on the edges of the pan so the chicken doesn't actually come in contact with the bottom of the pan.
  6. Place the pan directly under the broiler and cook the chicken until it's charred, about 15 to 20 minutes total, flipping the kabobs once halfway through cooking.
  7. Add the cooked chicken and cream to the sauce, place the lid back on and let it simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
  8. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the chopped cilantro (or parsley) and serve with cooked basmati rice if desired.


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