Friday, July 8, 2011

Miss M's birthday dinner

At our house, the birthday child usually gets to choose dinner on their day. Miss M recently chose one of my favorites, Chicken Tikka Masala (original here.) I wish all my children liked it as much as I do.

Chicken Tikka Masala

1 cup plain yogurt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more for spicier)
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper (more for spicier)
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
about 7 or 8 chicken tenders (or 3 chicken breasts)

2 tablespoons butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons diced green chilies (or 2 jalapenos, chopped)
4 teaspoons ground cumin
4 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons salt
2 (8 ounce) cans tomato sauce
1 can evaporated milk (or 2 cups heavy cream)

Mix the yogurt, lemon juice, 2 teaspoons cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, ginger, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Marinate the chicken in this for an hour in the fridge. (I put it in a ziploc to mix and marinate.)

Grill, or cook, the chicken until juices run clear. I use a George Foreman or a frying pan with oil.
Cut into bite size pieces. (You can do this first if you want, but I prefer to do it after the chicken is cooked.)

Melt butter in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Saute garlic and chili peppers for 1 minute. Add 4 teaspoons cumin, paprika, and 2 teaspoons salt. Stir in tomato sauce and milk (or cream). Simmer on low heat until sauce thickens, about 20 minutes. (Sauce will be thinner if you use milk instead of cream.) Add cooked chicken, and simmer another 10 minutes. Serve over rice or quinoa or similar grain.

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