In early May, I had the crazy idea to put our house on the market. Three months and one wild-n-crazy ride later, I can finally sit down in our new home and blog again.
It's nice to be back to normal.
Even if normal means not yet finding the plates and wondering where my blog camera is.
My first blog back from the world of moving resulted from a craving. A foodie, my 12-year-old daughter Christina wanted chicken tikka masala. And she wanted it BAD(ly).
I can understand why. CTM is addictive, with its yogurt-marinated, spiced and grilled chicken pieces and luscious cream-tomato sauce, perfect atop fluffy basmati rice or as a seductive pool for naan bread. There's a reason why chicken tikka masala has been called Britain's national dish and is a mainstay at almost every Indian restaurant.
Christina was pouting, however, because at my in-laws' lakehouse where the kids were visiting for a few weeks, there isn't an Indian restaurant for miles.
No problem, I told her, I would make it the next time her dad and I came up to the lakehouse.
"Yeah, right," was written all over her face.
Did I mention she was 12 (i.e., teenager-in-training)?
When I was home, I really did mean to pack the things I needed to make chicken tikka masala, such as garam masala, and bring them with me. But time got away from me, and the next weekend I showed up at the lakehouse spice-less.
Do you think Christina forgot about the promise of chicken tikka masala?
Not a chance.
The chicken tikka masala recipe at Rasa Malaysia saved the day as it used easily found chile powder and cumin as its main spices. And while I would have liked some garam masala, it was delicious without it.
If you haven't ever made Indian food, this is a good way to start. It's super easy and delicious.
To anyone who followed this blog, thanks for waiting for me. I look forward to reconnecting with you.
Chicken Tikka Masala
(based on Rasa Malaysia's recipe with slight modifications)
1 cup thick natural yogurt
1 tablespoon fresh ginger
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoon chili powder
1 cup heavy cream or half and half
2 garlic cloves, minced
1-2 jalapenos or red chiles, finely chopped (remove seeds if you don't like it too spicy)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons paprika powder
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1 tablespoon ghee or clarified butter or vegetable oil.
Handful of coriander leaves/cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper
Heat a dutch oven or large skillet to medium and melt the ghee/clarified butter. Sauté the garlic and chopped jalapenos until fragrant. Sprinkle the ground cumin, paprika powder and a pinch of salt. Sauté for a further minute or two until the mixture turns into a paste-like texture.