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Butter Chicken or British Chicken Tikka Masala: Our “No-Tears-No-Tandoor” Home Made Variation

butter chicken

If you have ever longed to make Butter Chicken or the British Chicken Tikka Masala at home, without using a tandoor, garam masala, or even tear-jerking onions, let me surprise you with this Home Style variation.
As a child, I would call this recipe “Lava Chicken” because the tomato puree makes this curry bright red in colour, just like molten lava. This is also one of my favourite Chicken dishes.
This is our JIFFY and healthier version of the popular Butter Chicken, as it cuts out the rather excessive use of fat and cream that the traditional recipes use.
And at the risk of repetition, let me again declare that the bright red curry will make this dish an instant hit with the young persons in your family.
Whole chicken -1 approx. 800 grams or 28oz (4 cups) (cut into 8 pieces)
Yoghurt-3 tablespoon
Chopped Ginger-1 inch piece
Chopped Garlic-6 cloves
Coriander powder-1 teaspoon
Red chilli powder-1/4 teaspoon (enough only to add flavour and not to make it spicy)
Cumin powder-1/2 teaspoon
Salt to taste
For the gravy:
Large ripe Tomatoes-3 (chopped)
Tomato puree-200 grams (7oz) (1 cup)
Low fat fresh cream-200 grams (7oz) (1 cup)
Butter-1 tablespoon
Coriander powder-1 teaspoon
Cumin powder-1/2 teaspoon
Red chilli powder-1/4 teaspoon (enough only to add flavour and not to make it spicy)
Salt and sugar to taste
Cashew nuts-50 grams or 2oz or 3 tablespoon (fried golden and then chopped up.)
Method to fry the cashew nuts: In a small pan, add about a tablespoon of cooking oil. Put the pan on your heat source. When the oil heats up, add the cashew nuts and stir till they turn golden. Immediately remove the cashew nuts to a plate and chop. DON’T EVER LEAVE THE CASHEW NUTS IN THE PAN, as the hot oil will keep roasting the cashew nuts and burn them.)
Get the chicken ready
The first step to create this delectable dish is to make the chicken.
In a pressure cooker, put the chicken pieces with all the ingredients (EXCEPT FOR THE INGREDIENTS FOR THE GRAVY). 
Mix well.
Note: You can also marinate the chicken for about 2 hours in the fridge with all these ingredients as that will help the chicken become tender. However, if you are short of time, you can also cook it instantly.
Close the lid of the pressure cooker with weight and put it on your heat source.
Let the cooker come to full pressure (i.e. when the weight lifts and there is a whistling sound).
Immediately reduce the heat (to SIM on a gas stove) and let the chicken cook for 5 more minutes before turning off the heat source.
Let the cooker cool down on its own.
If you are not using a pressure cooker, you can use a wok but the chicken then will take longer to cook (may be 20-25 minutes).
Now make the gravy
Meanwhile, take a wok and put it on your heat source.
Add the butter.
When the butter melts, add the coriander, cumin and the chilli powder.
Let the mixture roast for 1 minute.
Add the tomatoes and cook till the tomatoes soften up.
Add the tomato puree and the salt and sugar.
Gently keep stirring.
As the gravy turns a nice thick red colour, add the fresh low fat cream.
Stir well.
Switch off the heat source.
In a microwavable dish, mix together the cooked chicken and the gravy together.
Remember to add all the curry which may be there in the cooker as well. 
Add the cashew nuts. 
Microwave for 5 minutes so that all the ingredients are well integrated.
Your delicious chicken in a lava red curry with cashew nuts is ready.
Prep time: 7 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes with pressure cooker; 30-35 minutes in a wok; plus 5 minutes in the microwave for finishing
Total time: 27 minutes with pressure cooker; 42-47 minutes in a wok
[This recipe forms a part of my book: “Home Style Indian Cooking In A Jiffy” which has been on the Amazon #1 Best Seller list in Indian Cooking.  Incidentally, this book is currently available for just $0.99 (instead of the usual $3.99) only on and from 15-22 October 2014 (US Pacific Standard Time).]   
Best Wishes,

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