Making Chicken Tikka Masala at Home

Chicken Tikka Masala pic
Chicken Tikka Masala
Image: allrecipes.com

Based in Oregon, Graeme Queen has a background in information technology and currently serves as senior director of IT solution delivery at a Portland company, where he has been since 2011. In his free time, Graeme Queen enjoys cooking and has recently begun making chicken tikka masala.

One of the most popular Indian dishes, chicken tikka masala can be recreated at home.

The recipe begins by marinating the chicken for at least 30 minutes and up to 48 hours. The marinade typically includes lemon juice and a dairy product like yogurt as tenderizers, as well as ginger and garlic. Additional spices vary, but can include turmeric and paprika for color and cumin and garam masala for flavor. The chicken is pre-cooked separately from the sauce and can be broiled or grilled until almost done, but not fully cooked through. There should be some charred spots on the chicken for flavor.

Perhaps the most important part of the recipe is the sauce, which is made with tomatoes, chilies, onion, ginger, garlic, and other spices, commonly paprika, cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom. The sauce should be sweet, savory, and rich but not particularly creamy. While the spices vary according to the chef’s preferences, the sauce should be flavorful but not spicy. It is also important to balance the sauce with both sweet and sour, adding lemon juice if necessary. The meal comes together by simmering the pre-cooked chicken, cut into bite-size pieces, in the sauce until it is cooked through.

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