Are you craving an adventure in the kitchen that will transport you to the vibrant streets of India? Get ready to tease your taste buds with the irresistible flavours of Chicken Tikka Masala! This iconic dish is a celebration of Indian cuisine, renowned for its rich blend of spices and tender chicken. You do not have to be a professional chef to recreate this classic. This simple and delicious recipe is your ticket to creating a masterpiece curry that will have everyone begging for seconds.
The History of Tikka Masala
Originating from the bustling streets of India, Chicken Tikka Masala has captured the hearts and palates of food lovers around the world. Legend has it that this dish was born out of the creative fusion of Indian and British culinary traditions. It is said that chefs in Indian restaurants in the UK, seeking to cater to the British palate, developed this creamy and flavourful dish by marrying tender chicken tikka with a luxurious masala sauce. The result? A dish that perfectly balances the warmth of Indian spices with the creamy richness of the sauce.
Instructions for Chicken Tikka Masala:
Marinate the Chicken
Begin by infusing your chicken with a burst of flavour by marinating it in spices. Grab a large bowl and toss in your yoghurt, tikka masala paste, lemon juice, minced garlic, grated ginger, ground cumin, ground coriander, turmeric powder, paprika and a pinch of salt. Mix everything together until it is all nice and combined. Now, gently place your chicken pieces into this aromatic marinade, ensuring they are coated from every angle. Cover it up and pop it into the fridge for at least an hour. If you have the time, leaving it overnight is even better to let those flavours really infuse.
Cook the Chicken
Time to get sizzling! Heat up some vegetable oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Toss in your finely chopped onion and let it sizzle until it is translucent. Now, gently place your marinated chicken pieces along with all that yummy marinade into the pan. Give it an occasional stir and let it cook away until the chicken is cooked through and has a lovely golden brown colour, usually around 8-10 minutes.
Prepare the Sauce
Once your chicken is perfectly cooked, it is time to add in the tomato passata. Pour it into the pan and give everything a good mix, making sure to scrape up all those delicious browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Let it simmer away for another 5 minutes, allowing the sauce to thicken. Now, it is time to add a touch of creamy indulgence. Pour in that heavy cream and give it a gentle stir until it is fully blended into the sauce. Let it all simmer together for another 5 minutes.
Garnish and Serve
Once your sauce has reached the perfect consistency – not too thick, not too thin – it is time to take it off the heat. Sprinkle some fresh coriander leaves on top for a pop of colour and a burst of freshness. Now, all that is left to do is serve up your mouthwatering Chicken Tikka Masala and watch as your friends and family dive.
Alternatives For The Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe
Not a fan of chicken or prefer a meat free diet? No problem! You can easily substitute the chicken with other proteins such as paneer, tofu, shrimp, beef, or even mixed vegetables for a vegetarian twist. Simply adjust the cooking time accordingly to ensure your alternative protein is cooked through.
Side Dish Suggestions
No Chicken Tikka Masala is complete without some delicious sides to accompany it! Serve your piping hot Chicken Tikka Masala with fluffy basmati rice, warm naan bread, and perhaps some Bombay potatoes for an authentic Indian feast. The combination of aromatic rice, pillowy naan, and spicy potatoes perfectly complements the rich and flavorful Chicken Tikka Masala, creating a symphony of flavours that will delight your taste buds.
How To Make Your Own Tikka Masala Paste
Ready to take your Chicken Tikka Masala to the next level? Why not whip up your very own homemade tikka masala paste for an extra burst of flavour! Making your own paste is easier than you might think and allows you to customise the spice level to your taste preferences.
To create your own tikka paste, start by gathering a selection of aromatic spices such as ground cumin, ground coriander, turmeric powder, paprika and garam masala. Combine these spices with some fresh garlic, ginger and a splash of lemon juice for a zesty kick. For added depth of flavour, you can also throw in some tomato paste or puree.
How To Combine:
Using a mortar and pestle or a food processor, grind all the ingredients together until you have a smooth paste. If needed, you can add a splash of water or oil to help bind everything together.
Once your tikka masala paste is ready, you can use it to marinate your chicken or add it directly to your sauce for an extra punch of flavour. Homemade paste adds a special touch to your dish and elevates the flavours to new heights, ensuring that every bite is bursting with taste.
So, why settle for store-bought when you can create your very own tikka masala paste from scratch? Give it a try and get ready to impress yourself and your loved ones.
Ingredients for Homemade Tikka Paste:
2 tablespoons ground cumin
2 tablespoons ground coriander
1 tablespoon turmeric powder
1 tablespoon paprika
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon garam masala
1-inch piece of ginger, grated
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons tomato paste or tomato puree
Salt to taste
2-3 tablespoons water or oil (optional, for consistency)
Ingredients for Chicken Tikka Masala:
500g boneless chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 cup plain yoghurt
4 tablespoons tikka masala paste
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1-inch piece of ginger, grated
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 cup tomato passata
1/2 cup heavy cream
Fresh coriander leaves for garnish
For further culinary inspiration visit Eat Derbyshire.