Today sees the second instalment of our new series, Phil and Reza’s Indian Takeaways as they go on a culinary journey to find out the history behind some of our favourite curries.
This trip takes them to the hustle and bustle of New Delhi, where they look at the history behind the curry once named the national dish of Great Britain, the chicken tikka masala. They then make their way to Glasgow to find out how the curry has evolved from its Indian roots. With this wealth of knowledge at their fingertips, the duo go head to head in a chicken tikka masala cook off before taking to Glasgow town centre to serve up their curries to the public who will cast their votes in a taste off. But who will reign victorious?
Reza's chicken tikka masala
For the chicken tikka marinade:
3-4 tbsp chopped coriander (stalks and leaves)
2 medium onions, thinly sliced and fried in oil until golden brown and drained
2 tbsp chopped ginger
2 cloves garlic, chopped
4 green chillies, chopped
60ml thick yoghurt
3 tbsp single cream
Juice of ½ lime plus zest
1 level tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp garam masala
Salt to season
500g boneless chicken breasts, cubed
1-2 tbsp vegetable/sunflower/rapeseed oil
For the sauce:
1kg ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
1 tbsp grated ginger
4 green cardamom pods
2 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
80g chilled diced butter
80ml double cream
1 tsp dried fenugreek leaves
½ tsp garam masala
3 tsp sugar (according to taste)
1tbsp cream for garnish (optional)
1. Put all the ingredients for the marinade into a jug blender/food processor. Blend to a smooth paste.
2. Place the chicken into a large mixing bowl and pour over the marinade. Mix thoroughly until well combined. Cover the bowl with cling film and leave to marinate for a couple of hours or overnight.
3. Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and bring to room temperature. Place the marinated chicken pieces onto a baking tray in a single layer drizzling over 1-2 tbsp oil. Cook under a hot grill for 3 minutes on each side before adding to the sauce without the excess marinade.
4. To make the sauce, put the tomatoes into a large saucepan. Cover and cook over a medium heat until they begin soften.
5. Add 200ml water, the garlic, ginger, cardamom, cloves and bay leaf. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the tomatoes disintegrate. Remove the bay leaf, then pour the mixture into a jug blender Liquidise until smooth.
6. Pour the blended tomato mixture into a clean saucepan, add the chilli and cinnamon powders and simmer for approximately 10 minutes until slightly thickened. Add the butter a little at a time, stirring constantly. When the sauce turns glossy add the cream and simmer for a couple of minutes. Season with salt, crush the fenugreek leaves with your hands and sprinkle over the sauce along
with the garam masala. Keep warm.
7. Once the chicken has been cooked, add the pieces to the sauce without the excess marinade. Bring to the boil, simmer for a few minutes making sure the chicken has cooked through and finally adjust seasoning. Drizzle over some cream for garnishing.
Phil's chicken tikka masala
Preparation time: 40 minutes
Cooking time: 40 minutes
4 chicken breasts, skin on, cubed into 4 cm pieces
Juice and finely grated zest 1 large lime
Juice and finely grated zest 1 large lemon
1 tbsp very finely grated fresh ginger
3 cloves garlic, very finely crushed
½ tsp red chilli powder
1 tbsp smoked paprika
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp garam masala
2 tbsp coriander
2 tbsp oil
100g thick sheep yogurt
For the sauce:
4 tbsp oil
2 tbsp ground coriander
2 tsp turmeric
4 tsp paprika
4 tbsp grated ginger
2 tsp fenugreek leaves
2 tsp garam masala
1 small red chilli chopped very finely
½ tsp ground cloves
2 large onions very finely chopped
4 cloves garlic
4 ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 can tomato soup
1 chicken stock cube
125ml whipping cream
4 tbsp white wine vinegar
50-75g cold, cubed unsalted butter
A few leaves fresh coriander
Salt and pepper
1. Place the lemon and lime juices and zests into a bowl, then add all the rest of the ingredients and really mix well.
2. Add the chicken pieces and mix well again with a little salt and pepper. Cover and leave overnight in the fridge.
3. Preheat a grill to its hottest setting. For the sauce heat the oil and add the coriander, turmeric, paprika, ginger, fenugreek, garam masala, chilli and cloves and fry for a minute or two.
4. Next add the onions and garlic and cook again for a few minutes. Add the tomatoes, soup, stock cube, cream, vinegar and a little water and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the onions are cooked and slightly reduced.
5. Blend the sauce in a liquidiser until really smooth, and then pour back into a saucepan and reboil.
6. Remove the chicken from the fridge and place the chunks onto a baking tray and grill for 3-4
minutes on each side until half cooked.
7. Place straight into the simmering sauce and simmer for 4-5 minutes to finish cooking - do not
overcook. Season well with salt, pepper and sugar to balance.
8. Finally add the butter and shake the pan until the sauce is thickened and glossy. Add the coriander and serve.
With thanks to