Thursday, January 5, 2012

Recipe Review: Real Simple's Slow-Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

My sweet husband bought me a subscription to Real Simple Magazine this Christmas, a gift I'm excited to get all year round, and with all the time over the holidays I plowed through the January issue. They had a great segment of weeknight meal recipes called Takeout Fakeout, meant to mimmic the items you most love to order as takeout. Last night I tried the recipe for Slow-Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala. Though I am a regular user of Curry, Cumin, and Coconut milk, it's almost inevitably in Thai-style dishes. I realized I hadn't done too much Indian cooking at home, and Tikka Masala is one of my favorite things to order at an Indian restaurant, so I fired up the crock pot.

Read on for the rest of the review after the jump!

The dish is easy and pretty cheap to make. The onion and garlic need chopping before they go in the crock pot, but otherwise it's tomatoes out of a can and then pile on the chicken. I didn't have Garam Masala but I had all the different spices used in it, so I made my own using the extra instructions. It cooked on high for 3.5 hours and it was nicely done. I have to mention that I used chicken breasts instead of the thighs the recipe calls for, simply because the breasts were on sale at the grocery store and I wanted to save a few bucks. I can understand how the thighs would give the dish more richness and how the sauce would really compliment that dark meat, but I  didn't mind. The breasts became a little dry, but honestly I was glad the dish was slightly less rich, as Indian food sometimes upsets my stomach for that very reason.

It was really tasty! It also felt way healthier than when I eat it out at a restaurant. It had that same addictive sauce that kept me going back for seconds even though I was pretty full. Also, I've never had cucumber relish like that with Indian food before. The freshness and acidity was the perfect compliment and a great way to cut through the rich, creamy sauce. I used lime juice in the relish instead of lemon since I had it on hand, and I put some salt and pepper into the mixture to brighten it up a bit. I will never eat Indian food without something fresh like this again! It was delicious and added a whole new dimension.

The only drawback with this recipe is the amount of spice. I don't like things ├╝ber spicy, but I do like a little with my indian food. If you're looking for some fire in this dish, I recommend adding some cayenne or chili powder. Over all, I give the recipe four out of five stars and will definitely make it again. For how much prep it took (close to none besides making the rice and relish) it was a tasty and filling dinner. You can visit the Real Simple website to make it yourself. Enjoy! -hil

1 comment:

  1. I really want to try this! It looks incredible. Its going on my grocery list!