Chicken Tikka Masala is a world famous Indian curry which also happens to be the official and the most popular dish of Britain. Chicken is marinated in yogurt and spices, grilled to perfection and then simmered in a sauce made of tomatoes, cream and more spices. This is a curry which will make every chicken lover go ga ga over.
Few years ago, I had to see a physiotherapist who happened to be British. He told me about how much he loves Indian food, especially gulab jamuns and chicken tikka, and then he asked, “can you guess what is the official dish of Great Britain?”. I knew the answer and was not surprised at all. It definitely took me by surprise when few days back I was researching on a good recipe for chicken tikka masala and ended up seeing English ads serving this. Those were the days when I was learning the basics of cooking. Not in my wildest dream did I ever imagine that someday I would have my own food blog.
For a long time I did not venture into the field of punjabi curries, paneer(Indian cottage cheese) tikka masala and chicken tikka masala. Doesn’t this happen to you sometime? You don’t try something because you assume it might be difficult or its too much work. I still have that fear when I want to try something new.
But believe me this chicken tikka curry is so easy and the taste is restaurant style like the green peas masala curry on the blog.
Serve this with store bought naan (Indian bread), homemade naan – (with or without the oven) or whole wheat roti.
You can also grill it on an outdoor grill. You can keep the gravy ready and whenever you fire up the grill, grill the chicken till it’s cooked and slightly charred. The smokey flavor will give it an authentic taste.
The key is to let the curry simmer on medium low heat till a layer of oil can be seen on top and also the honey.
Easy and Quick VIDEO RECIPE
- 2 chicken breast or thighs cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1/4 cup thick plain yogurt
- 1/2 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika/Kashmiri red chilly powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon lime juice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- FOR CURRY:
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups tomato puree 5 medium size tomatoes
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons honey very important and no substitute please
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoon paprika / Kashmiri red chilly powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
- 1 teaspoon Kasturi methi / Dried fenugreek leaves for sprinkling Optional
- cilantro/coriander leaves for garnish
Coat the chicken well with the marinade and let it stay for 2 -4 hours or overnight in the refrigerator.
Preheat oven to 450 Degrees Fahrenheit or 230 Degrees Celsius.
Bake or grill the chicken on a tray or on skewers for 15 minutes or until the juices run clear. (Skewers should be completely immersed in water at least 30 minutes before grilling to prevent it from catching fire)
Take all the spices in a bowl. Heat oil and butter, preferably in a non-stick pan on medium-high heat. Add the tomato puree. Stir it till the gravy thickens and oil layer is seen on top.
Add spices and saute for 2 minutes. Add heavy cream, let the gravy simmer for a while. Add honey, mix well. Taste and adjust the sweetness and salt.
Add the cooked chicken pieces and Kasturi methi and let it cook for 2 minutes. Garnish with cilantro/coriander leaves.
Before adding the chicken let the gravy simmer on medium low heat till oil can be seen on top. For natural reddish color, add additional 1 teaspoon of paprika when you are letting the gravy simmer.
1 or 2 teaspoons of tomato paste added along with the puree gives it a bright red color.