* 3 chicken breasts * 4 Tbsp olive or groundnut oil * 5 cardamom pods * a 5cm cinnamon stick * 1 ½ onions * 2 tsp fresh ginger, minced * 2 tsp garlic, minced * 1 tsp cumin powder * 1 tsp coriander powder * ¼ tsp turmeric powder * ½ to 1 tsp cayenne pepper * 1 Tbsp paprika * 1 tsp garam masala powder * 1 large tomato * 1 tsp tomato purée * 150 ml water * Salt to taste * Yoghurt or 1 tin coconut milk, if desired * Fresh coriander to garnish * 1 sharp knife * 1 chopping board * 1 plate or tray * 1 mixing bowl * 1 large wide pan * 2 wooden or regular spoons * 1 bowl for mixing the spices
Step 1: Prepare the ingredients First of all, chop up the tomato finely and set aside for later use. Next, finely chop the onions and set aside. Finally, cube the chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces, season with a little salt and also put to one side. Step 2: Make the masala paste Mix together in a bowl the ginger, garlic, cumin, coriander, turmeric, cayenne, garam masala and paprika. Step 3: Flavour the oil and fry the onions Put the oil into a pan over a medium heat. When hot, add the cardamom pods and cinnamon stick, leave for a few seconds and then remove. This flavours the oil, giving it a wonderful aroma. Add the onions and cook while stirring, until brown. Step 4: Add the spices Add the masala paste and stir for a minute. Step 5: Add the remaining ingredients Add the tomato and tomato purée and stir for a minute till thoroughly combined. Pour in the water and bring to a gentle simmer, stirring constantly. Taste the sauce and season with salt if necessary. Step 6: Cook the chicken Add the chicken cubes and mix well into the masala. Simmer for 10-12 minutes, stirring every few minutes, until the chicken is cooked and tender. Check this by piercing the chicken with a sharp knife - if it goes straight through and comes out clean, it is done. For a weaker curry flavour, add either 1 small tin of coconut milk or 1 medium sized carton of yoghurt. Mix well and simmer for another 5 minutes. Step 7: Garnish and serve Place the chicken on a serving dish, decorate with coriander leaves and serve.
Chicken tikka masala (Hindi: चिकन टिक्का मसाला) is a westernised Indian dish based on baked chicken chunks (chicken tikka) cooked in a curry sauce. It was hailed as "Britain's true national dish" but is popular throughout the world.
" Chicken Tikka Massala is now a true British national dish, not only because it is the most popular, but because it is a perfect illustration of the way Britain absorbs and adapts external influences. Chicken Tikka is an Indian dish. The Massala sauce was added to satisfy the desire of British people to have their meat served in gravy. " - Extract from a speech by British Foreign Secretary, Robin Cook.