You won’t believe where I’m writing this post from. We are holidaaaying in a beautiful beach town, which is far from the crowd, is spattered with tiny shacks and resorts serving fresh seafood and has the bluest waters I’ve seen in India so far. I’m only going to tease you with a few pictures while I leave you with a killer Chicken Tikka Masala recipe. If you google chicken tikka masala, you are going to get about 14,50,000 results, but none of them can boast of using zero oil which is why this one is special.
This was the last meal we had before we left on our long-weekend vacation and a break that was much needed after the crazy months that we’ve had with both of us neck deep in work. I was hoping to leave technology behind and give myself a break, but didn’t have enough time to actually post a recipe before we left, and hence, a quick post to tell you all about the amazeballs that this Chicken Tikka Masala is.
And by the time I come back from my vacaaaaytion, I’m going to insist that you try this out because you will be amazed at how good this curry can taste with NO OIL. It still retains all the flavor, is rich, deep in color and chock block full of flavors, just the way chicken tikka masala should be. I do admit that I cheated a bit and added a tablespoon or two of cream, which is completely optional. But my north indian roots wouldn’t allow me to disregard the fat completely. I know you understand.
While I go back to enjoying my book and my half forgotten cup of tea, make sure you try this out because I promise you, this comes pretty close to the real thing, without all the grilling that tikka usually requires. This is the best version of homemade chicken tikka masala that you are going to have, without all the calories that the restaurant version comes with.
Or better still, find me on Instagram and show me your cooking skills by tagging your pictures #myfoodstories
A chicken tikka masala recipe which uses zero oil, is healthy and low in calories while retaining the taste that the restaurant version has.
- 500 grams Chicken (skinless , boneless Thighs)
For the marinade
- 3/4 cup Yogurt (thick)
- 1 tablespoon Garlic (paste)
- 1 tablespoon Ginger (paste)
- 1 tablespoon Cumin (powder)
- 1/2 tablespoon Kashmiri Chili powder
- 1/2 tablespoon Chili Powder (Hot)
- 1 tablespoon Coriander (Powder)
- 1 teaspoon Turmeric (Powder)
- 1 teaspoon Garam Masala (Powder)
- Salt to taste
For the curry
- 8 Tomatoes (chopped)
- 2 Onions (chopped)
- 8 cloves Garlic
- 2 Green Chillies
- 2 Chillies (Kashmiri Red)
- 4 – 5 Cashewnuts
- 1 tablespoon Poppy Seeds (Khus Khus or White)
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1 Cinnamon (stick)
- 3 Cloves
- 2 Cardamoms
- 2 teaspoons Tomato (Ketchup)
- ½ teaspoon Garam Masala
- 1 teaspoon Chili powder (Red)
- 2 tablespoons Kasuri Methi (dry fenugreek leaves)
- to taste Salt
- 2 tablespoons Fresh Cream
- Cut the chicken thighs into one and half inch pieces. Mix all the ingredients listed under marinade and add the chicken thighs to it. Mix well, and set aside for at least two hours.
- In a pressure cooker, add tomatoes, onions, garlic, green chilies, red chilies, cashew nuts, poppy seeds, bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and 1/2 cup water. Pressure cook for 2 whistles or 15 minutes. Switch off the flame and set aside to cool.
- Once cooled, fish out the whole spices (bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves and cardamom) and puree the rest to a smooth paste with 1/8 cup water.
- In a large nonstick skillet, pan fry the chicken pieces on each side for 3-4 minutes on high heat till they have a nice sear but are not fully cooked. Because of the yogurt and the non stick pan, you won’t need to add oil.
- In another pan, add the gravy and bring it to a boil. Reduce the flame, add tomato ketchup, garam masala, salt and red chili powder and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
- Add the chicken pieces, stir and simmer till the chicken pieces are cooked, about 25 minutes. Add a few tablespoons of water if the gravy is too thick.
- In a small pan, dry roast the kasuri methi while making sure it doesn’t burn. Cool completely before grinding it to a fine powder.
- Add the ground kasuri methi to the chicken curry, and cook for a few minutes.
- Stir in the cream and switch off the flame. Serve hot with chapatis, tandoori rotis or steamed rice.
It’s important to use chicken thighs as it’s the best cut of meat for this dish