Chicken Tikka

The story of this dish is somewhat amusing to say the least. A British gentleman dining in a restaurant, sometime in the early 1960′s, exclaimed his chicken tikka to be too dry and demanded a gravy with his bits of grilled chicken. The chef, who was exasperated and at his wits ends by the complaint, improvised by opening a can of Campbell’s tomato soup, added a dollop of yogurt and sprinkled some spices on the dry chicken tikka and presented the dinner guest with Chicken Tikka Masala! It was relished by the British gentlemen and that was when the chicken tikka masala was born. Today 18 tons of chicken tikka masala is consumed in Britain – per week! The chicken tikka masala might very well have been a dish adapted by the British upon their return from British India and today enjoys incomparable popularity. It might also have been the ingenious invention of an Indian chef to satisfy his guest. As an Indian however, I do have to say, I am delighted that it was the desire to experience a flavor of India that made this dish so popular. The recipe I am sharing with you was not created by my grandmother, mother or my dad. In my family chicken tikka masala was only enjoyed in restaurants, I never remember it ever being made at home. While none of my family members prepared the chicken tikka masala at home they, just like several expatriate Indians living outside India, enjoyed the rich creamy flavor of the tomato based sauce and the combination of spices. I’ll let you in on a secret: I really love the chicken tikka masala and unlike my grandmother and mother, do prepare it often at home. Over the years I have found my favorite spice blend and flavor combination for my own personal chicken tikka masala. Indian fusion food for everyone to indulge in! Verdict It’s easy to see why this dish might get confused for a typical Indian dish. There certainly is a lot of flavor coming from a typical Indian kitchen. I love the smokey aromas the chicken gets after being grilled on the charcoal and I always do get Tom to throw on the barbecue for this. The oven is a great alternative but that smokey flavor goes missing. It’s also wonderfully distinct it the rich sauce. The incredible orange color appeals to the eyes and the thick creamy texture is just waiting for warn pieces of naan to be dunked and scooped up.