Tuesday, November 04, 2008

all-American election night meal

I'm on pins and needles tonight. I just love election night, even though I rarely stay up late enough to find out who won. I'm holding out my last hope for McCain (mostly because of my views on abortion) but I'll just be glad to see Bush vacate the White House.* Please forgive me if you are still happy with Bush. No offense intended.

And what could be more American than Chicken Tikka Masala? The recipe is from my gourmet sister, Camilla. I make it at least once a month. It's time-intensive, what with the marinating and the separate sauce and the mincing of garlic and jalapeno. But, MAN. It's incredibly delicious, so delicious that if you cannot find garam masala where you live and would like to try this recipe, I will buy some for you in Chinatown and mail it to you. Just let me know if you want some. (Was that weird? Hope not; just trying to spread the gospel of tasty Indian food far and wide.)

Chicken Tikka Masala
I usually add some frozen cauliflower and peas to the sauce with the half and half, and I also grill or broil the chicken before cutting it up rather than after.

1 cup plain yogurt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground red pepper
2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 piece gingerroot, minced (1/2-inch long)
1 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno chile, minced
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 cup whipping cream OR fat-free half and half OR fat-free evaporated milk
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
For marinade, combine yogurt, lemon juice, cumin, red pepper, black pepper, cinnamon, salt and ginger in a medium bowl or food-safe plastic bag; stir in chicken, marinate in refrigerator 1 hour.
Meanwhile, soak six 6-inch bamboo skewers in water to cover 30 minutes and set aside.
For sauce, melt butter in a large, deep skillet over medium heat, add garlic and jalapeno; cook 1 minute.
Stir in coriander, cumin, paprika, garam masala and salt.
Stir in tomato sauce, simmer 15 minutes, stir in cream; simmer until sauce thickens, about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat grill to medium-high (or heat broiler).
Remove chicken from refrigerator.
Thread chicken onto skewers; discard marinade.
Grill or broil chicken, turning occasionally, until cooked through, about 8 minutes.
Remove chicken from skewers; add to sauce.
Simmer 5 minutes.
Serve with basmati rice, naan or pita bread.

*Funny bumper sticker I saw: "2008: End of an Error"


Kristi said...

What is garam masala- a Chinese spice? Rachael Ray has a watered down version of this that I've made a few times- her chicken isn't obviously quite as fancied up. She served hers over salad with I think spinach or parsley pesto. Troy & I both really liked her version- but I'm game to try this recipe. I'll let you know if I can't find masala in the booming metropolis of Lincoln, NE.

chiemama said...

That sounds delicious! But also it looks intense. My eyes glazed over the list of ingredients....I'll cook my teriyaki chicken for exchange! :)

beckbot said...

Garam masala is a combination of lots of spices; it is from India.

Patty O. said...

Awesome. I can't wait to make this. Bil will be in heaven. And I do actually happen to have an almost full jar of garam masala that I actually bought in your chinatown. Perfect, especially since in this town, if you say "Indian food" people think you are talking about navajo tacos or something. Taco Bell is actually listed under ethnic food on our town's website.

Maren said...

Yeah, Obama's views on abortion were my biggest hangup about him. Here's an interesting column from the Washington Post, though, that I think makes a lot of sense: http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/catholicamerica/2008/11/catholic_disconnections.html.

But whatever your political views, you really can't argue with "hooray for Indian food!"