Chicken Tikka Masala

A made-from-scratch Chicken Tikka Masala recipe with the signature yoghurt marinated chargrilled chicken smothered in an incredible spice infused curry sauce. It’s astonishingly straightforward – and no hunting down hard to find ingredients!

A made-from-scratch Chicken Tikka Masala recipe with the signature yoghurt marinated chargrilled chicken smothered in an incredible spice infused curry sauce. It’s astonishingly straightforward – and no hunting down hard to find ingredients!


Ingredients

CHICKEN TIKKA MARINADE:
  • 600 g/ 1.2lb chicken thigh (boneless, skinless), cut into 3cm / 2.2" cubes (Note 1)
  • 1/2 cup plain yoghurt, full fat best (Greek is fine)
  • 6 cloves garlic , minced (~1.5 tbsp)
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger , grated
  • 1 tsp garam masala (Note 2)
  • 1 tsp each salt, cumin, ground coriander, paprika (sweet, normal or smokey)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • Pinch black pepper
  • 2 tsp lemon juice

COOKING CHICKEN:
  • 1 - 2 tbsp oil (Note 3)

CURRY SAUCE SPICES:
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp garam masala (Note 2)
  • 2 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/8 tsp cardomon powder
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

CURRY SAUCE:
  • 3 tbsp / 65ml vegetable oil (Note 3)
  • 30g / 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped (brown, white or yellow)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp fresh ginger , grated
  • 6 cloves garlic , crushed or grated
  • 1 tbsp paprika (not smoked)
  • 400 ml / 1 2/3 cups tomato passata (tomato puree)
  • 400 ml / 1 2/3 cups water
  • 100 ml / 1/3 cup + 1 tbsp cream (thickened or pure is fine)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 50g / 3 tbsp unsalted butter


Instructions

CHICKEN TIKKA:
  1. Combine all ingredients except chicken in a bowl and mix. Add chicken and turn well to coat.
  2. Cover with cling wrap and leave in fridge to marinate overnight (3 hours minimum).
  3. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a non stick pan over high heat until smoking. Add half the chicken and spread out. Leave for 2 minutes or until charred. Turn each piece and cook the other side until charred - don't worry if not cooked inside. (Note 4, also Video helpful here) Remove into bowl.
  4. Scrape out charred bits left in pan and discard. Add more oil if required and cook remaining chicken.

SAUCE:
  1. Wipe skillet with paper towels (or do this part in a pot as you need a lid). Turn heat down to medium high.
  2. Add oil and butter. When butter is melted, add onions, ginger and salt.
  3. Cook, stirring constantly to ensure it doesn't burn, until the ginger is starting to turn golden and the onions smell sweet, about 5 - 7 minutes.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the garlic and paprika, and cook for 2 minutes.
  5. Add the Curry Sauce Spices, and cook a further 2 minutes, stirring.
  6. Add tomato passata and water, and mix. Bring to a simmer, then cover and reduce heat to low.
  7. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  8. Pour curry into a bowl, then use a stick blender to puree until smooth (Note 5).
  9. Return sauce to skillet. Add cream, sugar and butter. Stir to melt the butter.
  10. Add chicken, stir. Simmer for a few minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
  11. Optional: Sprinkle with a pinch of extra garam masala at the end.
  12. Serve over rice, sprinkled with coriander/cilantro if desired. Try this No Yeast Flatbread as a quick naan!

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