Friday, May 23, 2014

Chicken Tikka Masala

I've been on something of and Indian food kick recently.

Okay, I can't, in all fairness, call it a kick... but it might be turning into one! We've had a few Indian Daring Cooks' and Bakers' challenges, which all sparked my interest. But, particularly since the biryani challenge, I've really wanted to try more Indian cooking.

Then, a couple of weeks ago, daddy and I wound up at a new Indian restaurant on date night.  And it was delicious.

So when I came across a (very simplified) recipe for chicken tikka masala, one of the dishes that daddy and I had enjoyed on our date, I knew I wanted to try it.

As I said, it was super simple. The main ingredients were coconut milk and tomato sauce. And spices. Actually, just a few. Curry powder, a touch of salt and then some heat. Cayenne, to be precise.

Not sure if you can tell from the photo above, but the cayenne came out a little faster than I wanted it to.  Oops.

The whole thing cooks down and comes together nicely.

And that was the sauce! So all that was left was the meat. As it so happens, I threw some boneless, skinless chicken breast in the crock pot that morning.  All I had to do was cut it up...

...and add it to the prepared sauce!

I let the whole thing simmer lightly for half an hour, and then we were ready for dinner.

Authentic? Not so much. But I have to say - it was delicious. And flavorful. And, yes, a bit hotter than I usually go for (though, to be honest, I'm a bit of a heat wimp, so it's good to spice things up once in a while... literally...), but the flavor was good. And daddy and I both enjoyed it very much. It was actually even tastier the next day, too.  We offered the kids a taste, but were prepared (rightly so...) when they declined. Their loss. Hopefully when they get a little older they'll give it a shot.

So hopefully this is just the start to a new culinary adventure! Can't wait to try more!

Chicken Tikka Masala
(slighlty modified from A Happy Lass)

1 onion, sliced
1 can coconut milk
1 cup tomato sauce (I used canned crushed tomatoes)
2 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoon salt
a dash of cayenne pepper or 2-4 green chiles, cut into strips
approximately 2 pounds cooked chicken, cut into about 1 inch pieces

In a medium saucepan, lightly sautee the onions in extra virgin olive oil until softened and translucent.
Add coconut milk, tomato and spices. Stir to combine.
Cook over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until it comes to a boil.
Add cooked chicken, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes.
Serve over cooked rice.


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