Chicken Tikka Masala

Recipe By Saroj Velho

Chicken Tikka Masala is a dish of chicken pieces (the word ‘tikka’ meaning chunks or pieces) marinated in dry spices, yoghurt or coconut cream, tomatoes and fresh coriander to produce a rich, aromatic sauce which we call a masala. It is indisputably the most popular dish in Britain and for very good reason 🙂 I guarantee it will melt the heart of everyone at your table!

Marinade Ingredients

  • 1 kg skinless chicken breast or thigh, cut into 2 inch chunks
  • 500 gms fresh yoghurt
  • Lemon juice
  • 1 cup finely chopped fresh coriander leaves
  • 1/2 inch fresh ginger
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3-4 tbsp tandoori masala
  • 3 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 2 tsp cumin powder
  • Salt and chill powder to taste

Masala Ingredients

  • 2-3 medium onions
  • 2-3 ripe tomatoes
  • 4-5 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 inch piece ginger
  • 2 tsp cumin seed
  • 3-4 anise star
  • chopped fresh coriander
  • 1 300gm tin coconut milk
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 1-2 tsp turmeric powder
  • Salt and chilli powder to taste
  • 2 tsp sugar

Part One: Let’s Create the Marinade

  1. Rub a little salt and lemon juice into the chicken. Now mix the marinade ingredients together with the chicken in a large bowl with the yoghurt. Cover and refrigerate overnight if possible.
  2. Thread the chicken onto skewers and keep ready.
  3. Preheat your oven or grill to a medium high temperature (200C / 400F / Gas Mark 6).
  4. Place the skewers on the grill racks with a tray underneath to catch drippings. Grill till browned on all sides and tender.
  5. Remove skewers and plate.

Part Two: Preparing the Masala

  1. Heat the oil in a pan. Add the cumin seeds and anise star and when they begin to change colour, add the onions and sauté till well browned.
  2. Add the garlic and ginger and continue sautéing.
  3. Add the cumin and coriander powders and mix well.
  4. Add the tomatoes and continue to sauté on low heat till the tomatoes are completely cooked and the oil separates.
  5. Add all the spices slowly and mix gently.
  6. Stir in coconut milk and cook for 2-3 mins.
  7. Add the chicken and simmer till the gravy and oil separates.
  8. Adjust for salt and add the red chilli and garam masala powders with half the coriander leaves.
  9. Mix well and cook for 2 mins. Remove from heat and serve hot, garnished with the remaining fresh coriander.