Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken Tikka Masala is one my favorite dishes. The garam masala and ginger give it a lot of flavor and the red chili flakes add just enough heat. I couldn’t tell you when I first had this dish but there is a distinct event I associate with it. The birth of my first child. When I had my first child my mother would encourage me to get out of the house. Of course, with a  new baby I was hesitant to do so. So at least one Saturday a month she would come by and pick us up for lunch. Our regular place was a restaurant called Doon. We’d go and sit for hours enjoying the lunch buffet. We’d have saag paneer, chicken tikka masala and somosas (don’t worry those are coming to the blog soon). It was a great time, great conversation and it made me feel like a real live person.

Even if you’re unsure you’re a real live person I encourage you to try this dish. I mean who doesn’t like tomatoes and chicken? One of the best reason to make global food in your home is so you can make it to your taste. For instance, I would typically add serrano, jalapeño or red pepper flakes to this dish. But since I need to make it more family friendly, I will just add a sprinkle of red pepper flakes instead of a teaspoon. Other than the garam masala (which should be in the spice aisle of your grocery store, i.e. baking) use what you already have in your house. Whether that’s regular yogurt or greek yogurt, fresh tomatoes or crushed tomatoes from a can. This dish will be delicious either way.

Chicken Tikka Masala:

Makes 6 servings

  • 2 pounds of chicken (cubed)
  • 1 teaspoon of garam masala
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup of yogurt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon ginger minced
  • 3 tablespoon butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 6 cloves of garlic (minced)
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 2 tablespoons of ginger (grated)
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 18 ounces crushed tomatoes
  • 1  cup of chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup of heavy cream
  • serrano or jalapeño peppers (optional)

Combine all of the ingredients for the marinade (including chicken) in a plastic bag or covered bowl.

Allow to marinate for at least two hours.

Melt butter in a pot over medium heat.

Add spices and salt to melted butter and combine thoroughly.

Add onions, then garlic to spice mixture.

Once onions a soft and translucent and tomatoes and chicken broth.

While tomato mixture is simmering (30 minutes in total) place marinated chicken in a grill pan or heavy pan and cook until gently brown.

Turn chicken to cook and brown each side. This should take about 7 to 10 minutes in total.

Once cooked, add chicken to tomato mixture and stir.

After about 5 minutes add heavy cream and stir well.

Additional salt and pepper to taste.

Chicken Tikka
Chicken Tikka Masala

We serve this dish over basmati rice and with naan bread.

Top with red onions, jalapeño peppers (if you like it hot) and cilantro. I love the crunch of red onions on top and the bite of some pickled jalapeño peppers.

What toppings would you add to this dish?


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