Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken Tikka Masala

  • 6 garlic cloves, finely grated
  • 4 tsp finely grated peeled ginger
  • 4 tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 cups whole-milk yogurt (not Greek)
  • 1 Tbsp kosher salt
  • 2 lbs skinless, boneless chicken breasts, halved lengthwise
  • 3 Tbsp ghee (clarified butter) or vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 6 cardamom pods, crushed
  • 2 dried chiles de arbol or 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 28-oz. can whole peeled tomatoes
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro plus sprigs for garnish
  • Steamed basmati rice for (serving)

Combine garlic, ginger, turmeric, garam masala, coriander, and cumin in a small bowl.  Whisk yogurt, salt, and half of spice mixture in a medium bowl; add chicken and turn to coat. Cover and chill 4-6 hours. Cover and chill remaining spice mixture.

Heat ghee (clarified butter) in a large heavy pot over medium heat, add onion, tomato paste, cardamom, and chiles and cook, stirring often until tomato paste has darkened and onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Add remaining half of spice mixture and cook, stirring often until bottom of pot begins to brown, about 4 minutes.

Add tomatoes with juices, crushing them with your hands as you add them. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, stirring often and scraping up browned bits from bottom of pot until sauce thickens, 8-10 minutes.

Add cream and chopped cilantro.

Simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens, 30-40 minutes.

Meanwhile preheat broiler. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and set a wire rack inside sheet. Arrange chicken on rack in a single layer. Broil until chicken starts to blacken in spots (it will not be cooked through), about 10 minutes.

Cut chicken into bite size pieces, add to sauce and simmer, stirring occasionally until chicken is cooked through, 8-10 minutes. Serve with rice and cilantro sprigs.

Yield: 6 Servings

From Bon Appetit, April 2013 edition

Gray: This was fantastic, and just as good as leftovers as it was fresh.  This was a little more challenging recipe, mostly because there are several types of cooking involved, but it really wasn’t too bad.  The best part is that you can spread the preparation out, and do quite a bit of the prep work the day before.  I didn’t do that, but it definitely would have helped.  This dish by itself was not very difficult, but I made it with two companion dishes that we will be sharing here as well, and that made the overall process somewhat more difficult.  I really wish I had done more ahead!  This recipe, along with the onion naan and cilantro-yogurt sauces (recipes coming in the next two weeks!) are one of the best meals we have cooked so far this year. We will definitely be doing this one again, I hope you enjoy!

Katie: This. Was. Delicious!!! Gray asked me what I thought about him making Indian food one night. Indian is often not one of my favorites, but that is just because I haven’t made it a point to try different dishes and figure out what I like. I said okay, but only because this dish looked so good in the magazine. I’m very glad I agreed, as this really was one of the best things we’ve made in quite some time! It was spicy without overwhelming the other flavors. The recipe made a fair amount, but we invited friends over to partake of “blog food.” When we invite people over for one of our recipes, we always warn them that we hope it is good, but that there is a possibility that it will not be good, in which case, we’re all going to go out for fast food! That was not a problem this time! Everyone had plenty to eat and my leftovers were wonderful. I can’t wait to make this again!

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