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Chicken tikka masala

April 27, 2011

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Serves 4

CHICKEN

1 cup plain yogurt
1 piece (1 inch) fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces

1. In a bowl, combine yogurt, ginger, garlic, lime juice, cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, black pepper, garam masala, and salt. Stir well.

2. Add the chicken, mix well, and cover. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or for up to 12.

SAUCE

3 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons ghee (clarified butter) or butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 piece (1 inch) fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 Indian or Thai green chili, seeded and finely chopped
3/4 cup tomato puree
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup half-and-half
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1. In a bowl, combine the coriander, cumin, cayenne pepper, garam masala, turmeric, and salt; set aside.

2. Turn on the broiler.

3. In a large heavy skillet, melt the ghee or butter. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes or until it starts to brown. Add the ginger, garlic, and chili. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute.

4. Add the coriander mixture and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. If the mixture starts to burn, add a spoonful of water.

5. Stir in the tomato puree and water. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and cook, stirring often, for 15 minutes. Add more water if the sauce is getting too thick.

6. In a bowl, mix the yogurt and half-and-half. Stir the mixture into the sauce. Add the sugar.

7. Skewer the chicken, discarding the marinade, on 4 wooden skewers. Set them on a broiler pan and broil for 8 minutes, turning once, or until the chicken is almost cooked through.

8. Remove chicken from the skewers. Add the cubes to the sauce. Stir well and simmer for 5 minutes.

9. Add the cilantro and taste for seasoning. Add more salt, if you like. Serve with rice or bread.