Chicken Tikka Masala

Published March 12, 2012 by jenmatteson

At the Food and Wine Experience, I sampled some very tasty Chicken Tikka Masala.  I’m not even sure I’ve ever had it before, but I was truly missing out.  My girlfriend said I should make some and add it to my blog because she’d love to try it, and that is exactly what I did.  It wasn’t super simple, but not difficult by any means. Busy is the best way to describe it.  Of course, I did find the recipe from Food and Wine, so being extremely busy isn’t really surprising.  The chicken needs to marinate overnight, so be sure to plan accordingly.  I cut this recipe in half, and we still had a ton of leftovers.  I also lightened it up a bit by using non-fat yogurt and half and half instead of heavy cream.

Chicken Tikka Masala


1/2 cup plain non-fat yogurt
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 tsp cumin
3/4 tsp coriander
1/8 tsp cardamom
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp tumeric
salt and ground pepper

1 1/4 lbs skinless, boneless chicken thighs
salt and ground pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
1/8 cup whole almonds, blanched
1/2 large onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp fresh minced ginger
3/4 tsp garam masala
3/4 tsp chile powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
one 14.5 oz can peeled tomatoes, finely chopped, juices reserved
1/2 tbsp sugar
1 cup half and half

1. In a large glass bowl, combine the yogurt, garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander, cardamom, cayenne and tumeric.  Season with salt and pepper.
2. Make a few shallow slashes in each piece of chicken.  Add the chicken to the marinade, turn to coat, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
3. Preheat the broiler and position a rack about 8 inches from the heat.  Remove chicken from the marinade; scrape off as much of the marinade as possible.  Season chicken with salt and pepper and spread the pieces on a baking sheet. Broil chicken about 12 minutes on each side, until it begins to brown in some spots.  Remove from oven and transfer to a cutting board.  When cooled, cut the chicken in 2-inch pieces.
3. Meanwhile, in a small skillet, heat 1 tsp of oil and add the almonds.  Cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly until golden, about 5 minutes.  Let cool. Transfer almonds to a food processor and pulse until finely ground.
4. In a large cast-iron casserole (I used a large pot), head the remaining oil until shimmering.  Add the onion, garlic, and ginger and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until tender and golden, about 8 minutes.  Add the garam masala, chile powder, and cayenne and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.  Add the tomatoes and their juices and the sugar and season with salt and pepper.  Cover partially and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 20 minutes.  Add the half and half and ground almonds and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes longer.  Stir in chicken and simmer gently for 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
5. Serve over steamed rice, rice pilaf, or with warm nan.

5 comments on “Chicken Tikka Masala

  • OMG, I am so excited to try this one! It was so good at Food & Wine, I am sure that your’s is equally as awesome!

    Making jalapano burgers tonight – hope they turn out.

  • So I made this tonight – I could barely contain myself when the chicken was marinating in the fridge. It was so delish! I am going to freeze the leftovers like you suggested because I have enough to feed the block. Thanks for posting!

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