Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken tikka masala is an Indian dish based on Indian-style roast chicken chunks (chicken tikka) cooked in a tomato, masala ("mixture of spices") sauce.

There is no standard recipe for chicken tikka masala; a survey found that of 48 different recipes the only common ingredient was chicken. The sauce usually includes tomato/yogurt and either cream or coconut cream and various spices. The sauce or chicken pieces (or both) are often coloured orange or red with food dyes.

I used to prepare Chicken Tikka Masala by using this non traditional quick recipe, when I didn’t have the facility to roast chicken in oven.

1 lb of skinless boneless chicken breasts
2 tbsp chicken tikka masala
1 tsp lime juice
2 medium sized onions sliced thinly
2 medium fresh tomatoes diced
Salt to taste
1 tsp garlic paste
1 tsp ginger paste
½ tsp garam masala powder ( can be modified according to taste)
½ ” stick of cinnamon
½ tsp caraway seeds (Shahjeera)
3-4 tbsps cooking oil
Chopped cilantro leaves to garnish

  • Cut the chicken into 1” cubes.
  • Add chicken tikka masala, lime juice, yogurt, ginger garlic paste, salt and 1 tbsp of oil.
    Keep it to marinate for about an hour.
  • Grind tomatoes to a smooth paste in a food processor. Keep it aside.
  • Heat the cooking oil in a medium-sized, heavy-bottomed pan or a non stick pan on a medium flame. Add cinnamon and caraway seeds to it. Stir till they are light brown. Add onions and fry till they are golden brown.
  • Add chicken pieces to it without its marinade. Fry it for about 3-4 minutes on high heat.
  • Add tomato paste and remaining marinade to it and fry it for another 2-3 minutes. Lower the heat and cook it covered till chicken is tender.
  • Take out in a dish.
  • Serve hot with pita or roti (Indian flat bread).

Do You Know:

Chicken tikka or Murg Tikka (In Hindi) is a dish of Indian Subcontinent. It originated in the Punjab region of India and Pakistan.
It is traditionally baked on skewers with small pieces of chicken, usually boneless, in clay based oven called tandoor, after marinating in spices and yogurt.
The literal meaning of tikka in Persian is "bits, pieces." Persian is the language of the Mughals who named many Indian dishes. The Punjabi version of tikka is ‘barbecued on red-hot coal’ and does not always contain boneless pieces.

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