If you like Indian food you will love this Chicken Tikka Masala recipe. It’s simply amazing. And pretty easy to make, which is not exactly true for most Indian recipes.

I found this recipe on Pioneer Woman’s blog. She has great step-by-step directions along with awesome photos. This is delicious served with basmati rice and naan. Be sure to include the naan! Trader Joes carries a great garlic naan for just a few bucks.

Chicken Tikka Masala (recipe from Pioneer Woman)

Ingredients

3 whole (to 4) Chicken Breasts
Kosher Salt
Ground Coriander
Cumin, To Taste
½ cups Plain Yogurt
6 Tablespoons Butter
1 whole Large Onion
4 cloves Garlic
1 piece (approximately 2 Inches) Chunk Fresh Ginger
Garam Masala
1 can (28 Ounce) Diced Tomatoes
Sugar
1-½ cup Heavy Cream
2 cups Basmati Rice

OPTIONAL:

Fresh Cilantro
Chili Peppers
Turmeric
Frozen Peas

Preparation Instructions

Start by seasoning the chicken breasts with some kosher salt. Next sprinkle them on both sides with some coriander and cumin. Then coat the chicken breasts completely with the plain yogurt. Set the chicken on a metal cooling rack over a foil-lined baking sheet and place it about 10-12 inches below a broiler for 5-7 minutes per side. Watch carefully so as not to totally char the chicken. It should have slightly blackened edges. Remove from oven.

Next dice one large onion. In a large skillet melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Toss in the onions and sauté until they are slightly browned. As the onions cook, mince your garlic. Next, cut off the outer skin and mince or grate a 1 by 2 inch chunk of fresh ginger. Add the garlic and ginger to the onions. Also throw in about 1 tablespoon of salt.

Next you are going to add about 3 tablespoons Garam Masala spice. And if you like it hot, this is also when you will add your hot chili peppers. Serranos work well. Now you are going to add your can of diced tomatoes. Continue cooking and stirring, scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze it. Add about 1 tablespoon sugar. Let this mixture simmer on medium for about 5 minutes.

To a rice cooker add 2 cups Basmati rice, 4 tablespoons butter, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 tablespoon Ground Turmeric and 4 cups water. Cover, turn on your rice cooker and walk away. If you do not have a rice cooker, cook your rice as usual but make sure that you use Basmati rice.

After the Tikka Masala sauce has had a chance to simmer for a little bit, add in the 1 ½ cups of heavy cream. Now, chop up your chicken breasts into chunks and stir them into the Tikka Masala sauce. A handful of chopped fresh cilantro is a nice addition if you like cilantro. You can also throw some frozen peas into the cooked rice, give them a stir, and allow the heat of the rice to cook the peas. It tastes great and gives another nice dash of color. Serve the rice with the Chicken Tikka Masala over top. Make sure to have some Nann bread handy, too.

Remember my friend Amy’s Rani in the Kitchen guest posts? She’ll be back to posting after her wedding in October. She promised to post a Chana Masala recipe (which is my favorite Indian dish).  Do you like Indian food? Have you tried making it at home? If you have any great recipes I’d love for you to send them my way, eatdrinkpretty {at} gmail {dot} com.

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Today’s guest post is part 4 in the series “Rani in the Kitchen”, written by my friend Amy. Click here for parts 1-3.
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Today’s recipe is a fantastic north Indian recipe I received from Jay’s mom and it is a true culinary adventure. If you’re not from the Southern part of the U.S. (or even if you are!) you initially may be a little put-off by this Bhindi Masala (Okra Masala) recipe. Trust me though, I have had avowed okra-haters rave about this recipe and there is one reason – it is not as gooey as southern Okra recipes often are- and tastes ten times better. The reason the okra is not gooey is because of the way you dry, cut, and saute the okra. The recipe takes some time – usually an hour or so – but I find cutting the Okra (the most time consuming part) a methodical and peaceful exercise. So turn on some music, get out your Indian spices, and get ready to cook something new and different!

Most of you should be able to find fresh Okra at any major supermarket. If you’re local supermarket does not have it, an Indian supermarket surely will. Do not use frozen okra, it just does not turn out the same. When selecting Okra, look for green pods that are tender, but not too soft or tough. This recipe goes really well with Indian bread (Naan or Roti). I always buy the Indian breads -maybe this blog is an excuse to start making them!

Bhindi Masala

1 lb of fresh okra
4 oz of vegetable oil
1 teaspoon of salt
1 large yellow onion
1 teaspoon black pepper
3 cloves of garlic (or teaspoon of garlic paste if you have it)
2 tablespoons of ground coriander
2 tablespoon of turmeric
1 teaspoon of red chili powder (more or less if you like it more spicy)
1 and 1/2 tablespoon garam masala
2 oz of canned tomato paste
Cilantro (optional)

1) Wash and individually dry very very well each piece of Okra. (I use paper towels).

2) Cut off the tops and the tips (tails) of the Okra and cut the okra into 1/2 inches pieces wiping the knife with a paper towel in between each slice. It is important to wipe the knife while cutting the Okra.

3) Put the Okra in a dish and sprinkle with black pepper.


4) Peel the onion and slice thinly.

5) Peel and mince the garlic (or use garlic paste).

6) Heat the oil in the sauce pan on medium-high heat, and fry the onion and garlic until they are softened.

7) Add the coriander, chili powder, and garam masala and cook for another minute. Stir well to ensure the spices do not stick to the bottom of the pan.

8) Add the Okra and cook for another 15-20 minutes or until the Okra starts to char or blacken a bit. Gently turn the okra as you are cooking it, but be careful not to crush the it- otherwise this makes it mushy.

9) Add the tomato paste and gently toss with the Okra. This is suppose to be a dry curry, but you can add a little (couple of tablespoons) of hot water if it appears to be sticking to the pan. Cook for another 4-5 minutes or until the Okra is soft and brown.

10) Add the salt at the end of the recipe as the salt tends to draw out moisture.

11) Garnish with chopped clinatro if you have some!


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