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Chicken tikka masala (on the menu during the lockdown)

Posted by Sheryl Julian  April 30, 2013 03:30 PM

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Chicken tikka masala

Serves 4


During the lockdown in and around Boston on Apr. 19, blogger Kathryn Nulf made this spicy chicken dish, which she posted on her blog The recipe originally comes from The Chicago Tribune, who published it on Apr. 17, 2002 (almost 11 years to the day when Kathryn made it). She found it on and likes to make it with coconut milk and/or coconut milk yogurt, she writes, and add vegetables to the sauce. Serve it in bowls over rice.



1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken, cut into 1-inch cubes

1 cup plain yogurt

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons crushed red pepper

2 teaspoons ground black pepper

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon salt

1 piece (1 inch) fresh ginger, chopped


1. Soak 6 bamboo skewers in water for 30 minutes.

2. In a bowl, combine the yogurt, lemon juice, cumin, red and black pepper, cinnamon, salt, and ginger. Add the chicken pieces. Thread the chicken on the skewers and refrigerate for 1 hour.

3. Discard marinade.



1 tablespoon butter

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 jalapeno or other small chili pepper, cored and chopped

2 teaspoons ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground paprika

1 teaspoon garam masala (available at specialty markets)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce

1 cup heavy cream or coconut milk

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro


1. In a flameproof casserole over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the garlic and jalapeno or other chili pepper. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the coriander, cumin, paprika, garam masala, and salt. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute.

2. Stir in the tomato sauce and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

3. Stir in the cream or coconut milk and simmer 5 minutes.

4. Light a grill or turn on the broiler. Grill or broil the chicken skewers, turning occasionally, for 8 minutes or until cooked through. Slide the chicken off the skewers and add it to the sauce. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.

5. Serve over rice, sprinkled with cilantro. Adapted from The Chicago Tribune


About Dishing

What's cooking in the world of food.


Sheryl Julian, the Globe's Food Editor, writes regularly for the Food section.

Devra First is the Globe's food reporter and restaurant critic. Her reviews appear weekly in the Food section.

Ellen Bhang reviews Cheap Eats restaurants for the Globe and writes about wine.

The Recipe Box Project:

If you want to contribute a recipe to The Recipe Box Project, please write it below. Also tell us where you got it (package box, cookbook, mom, friend -- include the name). We're looking for the kinds of dishes that people grew up on, that were served at family suppers, that tell a story, that are typically New England, or that you brought with you from a far away place to New England. We will print one of the recipes in the Food section once a month. To ask any questions, write to Debra Samuels, who is overseeing this project, at To discuss your recipes, click here.