Sunday, July 12, 2009

Saturday Night In The Kitchen

I get SO tired of making the same old thing for dinner all the time. Saturday night staples around here are usually something like tacos, enchiladas or homemade pizza or even just a call to Pizza Hut. But not last night! I wanted something different. Something exotic. Something Indian!

Ever since last summer when my neighbor introduced me to the awesomeness that is Chicken Tikka Masala, I've been craving more. And more jasmine rice. And more of that awesome Indian bread, Naan. Chicken Tikka Masala is basically chicken that's been marinated in yogurt (you wouldn't believe how tender and flavorful this makes the meat) and broiled or grilled, then served with a spicy (but not too much) tomato based sauce.I had found a few recipes online for the chicken, but really, they seemed like a lot of work, or at least more work than I wanted to deal with. As for the naan, it's similar to a pita bread, only softer and more flavorful.

Last weekend, though, I was outside and said hello to my neighbor. I asked her if the Indian market nearby sold garam masala, a spice blend essential to Indian cooking. She said they did, but in the true spirit of being neighborly, she ran back in to her house and brought out a plastic container of the spice, and showed me what the bag looked like. Sweet! I would soon be in business. Now all I needed was a recipe that I wouldn't find too intimidating. As usual, Pioneer Woman came through, as last month Pastor Ryan posted his recipe for Chicken Tikka Masala. And at AllRecipes.com, I found an amazingly easy recipe for naan.

I made the naan first, and Chickenhead decided to help out in the kitchen. Here he is helping out with the naan-



After rolling it out, in to the pan it goes. Naan is traditionally made on a grill, but it was too danged hot and humid outside to mess with that. This grill-type pan worked wonderfully.


A lovely stack of heaven!


Chickenhead was way in to it!


And, our complete meal. Chicken Tikka Masala, with jasmine rice with saffron and peas, and naan. Everyone loved it! Chickenhead had two helpings, plus some leftovers for lunch today. The Husband loved it, and so did my MIL. My momma wouldn't even dare to try it, but she's not one to try new things.


The recipes were really easy to follow. I did make one change to the chicken recipe. Pastor Ryan's recipe calls for heavy cream. I used a can of coconut milk, but you could also use plain yogurt.

PS- Pastor Ryan's recipe also includes the ingredients to make your own Garam Masala spice blend. I think it may be cheaper to just go to a local Indian grocer and pick up a bag there. The bag my neighbor showed to me was only $3.99 and was probably about a pound in size.

4 comments:

Lola said...

We don't have any Indian markets out in the burbs here. I miss the Indian markets in Chicago. We lived very close to Devon Street where that is like Indian market row.

I had to buy the jarred Spice Island stuff at my regular grocery store. It was the most expensive spice I've ever bought. $9.99 for one of those small bottles.

Kelley said...

You can order it online at Penzy's-
http://www.penzeys.com/cgi-bin/penzeys/p-penzeysgarammasala.html

I've heard that Trader Joe's carries it as well, but I don't know what their price would be. I really wish we had a Trader Joe's here!

Mrs. G. said...

Indian food is my all time favorite. When we were in NY, we ate it four out of 8 nights. Yum.

Kelley said...

Hey there Mrs. G! Well now that I've made it at home, I want to make it all the time! My husband is already dropping hints for more naan.