How To Make A Chicken Tikka Masala That’s As Comforting As They Come

By Angela Casley
Photo / Babiche Martens

I like to double the masala sauce and freeze half, ready for another time. Go easy on the chilli if you are serving this to young ones.


Serves 4

600g chicken thighs
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp salt
1 tsp each cumin, paprika, garam masala
¼ tsp chilli
¼ cup cream

Masala sauce

¼ cup flavourless oil
1 large onion, sliced
1 Tbsp grated ginger
1 Tbsp grated garlic
1 Tbsp ground coriander
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp turmeric
½ tsp chilli powder
½ cup yoghurt
1 cup evaporated milk
½ cup passata
1 tsp salt
½ cup chopped coriander

1. Cut the chicken thighs into 2-3cm pieces. Place them in a non-corrosive bowl. Add the lemon juice, salt, spices and cream, stirring well. Cover and leave to marinate for at least 2 hours. Overnight is even better.

2. For the sauce, heat the oil in a large pot. Add the onion, cooking slowly for 10 minutes until softened. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for 2 minutes.

3. Stir through the coriander, garam masala, turmeric and chilli for 2 minutes until fragrant.

4. Add the yoghurt, cooking for 1 minute, then the milk, passata and salt and bring to a simmer for 8 minutes.

5. To cook the chicken, heat a grill pan or barbecue to a high heat. Sear the chicken on both sides until charred. Remove and add to the sauce.

6. Heat the sauce for 10 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through completely.

7. Add the coriander and serve hot with rice and homemade or bought naan.

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