The original Chicken Tikka is an Indian dish and the word “Tikka” in Hindi means pieces or small bits. Authentic Indian Chicken Tikka Masala is prepared with pieces of chicken, marinated with spices and yogurt and grilled over a charcoal fire to give it a lovely smokey flavour.
The chicken tikka masala known today is a curry dish in which roasted chicken chunks (tikka) are served in a rich orange, creamy, lightly spiced, tomato-based sauce.
The origins of chicken tikka masala are disputed. The oldest claim is that it was created for the Mughals in the pre-British India era. Another legend has it that chicken tikka masala was actually created in the UK in the 1960s when a diner in a restaurant demanded some spicy gravy on the dry chicken dish served to him. The chef improvised by adding a tin of Campbell's tomato soup, yogurt and some spices to the dry chicken dish. This was relished by the diner who enjoyed it and the first chicken tikka masala with gravy was born.
600g boneless skinless chicken, cut in 1 inch cubes
1 cup plain yogurt
2 Tbs lemon juice
2 Tsp ground cumin
2 Tsp ground red pepper
2 Tsp black pepper
1 Tsp ml cinnamon
1 Tsp ml salt
1 piece minced ginger (approx. 5cm long)
6 bamboo skewers
Sauce1 Tbs unsalted butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno, minced
2 Tsp ground coriander
1 Tsp ground cumin
1 Tsp paprika
1 Tsp garam masala (buy in Indian market)
1/2 Tsp salt
1 can tomato sauce or can diced tomatoes
1 Cup whipping cream
1/4 Cup chopped fresh Corriander
1. Soak bamboo skewers in water.
2. To make the sauce, melt butter on medium heat.
3. Add garlic & jalapeno; cook 1 minute.
4. Stir in coriander, cumin, paprika, garam masala & salt.
5. Stir in tomato sauce or can of diced tomatoes. and simmer 15 minutes.
6. Stir in cream; simmer to thicken- about 5 minutes.
7. Thread chicken on skewers, and marinate (in the refrigerator) for an hour or so and discard marinade.
8. Grill chicken, turning occasionally, to cook through- about 8 minutes.
9. Remove chicken from skewers; add to sauce and simmer 10 minutes.
10. Garnish with corriander and serve with basmati rice, naan or pita bread.
Sitbal Arora is chef at Nuneaton's Rugger Tavern where you can enjoy a full Indian buffet for £8.95 every night between 6pm and 11pm. Alternatively, they also serve a 4 course carvery for £4.50 every day between 11:30am and 9:30pm.