Tikka Chicken With Pumpkin Curry
This mild but richly seasoned version of chicken tikka masala is taken to a new place with the use of pumpkin. This recipe calls for canned pumpkin, making it a year-round treat, but an equivalent amount of butternut squash or fresh pumpkin in season makes it a lovely autumn dish as well. If you like a hotter sauce, add more chilis to the saute, but the flavor of the sauce is quite complex. You can also mix in some frozen peas or diced cooked potatoes when the casserole is removed from the oven for variety.
- Ready In:
- 2hrs 45mins
- 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into chunks
- 1⁄4 cup lime juice
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1⁄2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 tablespoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
- 1 small red dried chili
- 2 cups thinly sliced shallots
- 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled and sliced crossways
- 8 fresh garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
- 2 cups canned pumpkin
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
- 5 tablespoons plain yogurt
- salt and pepper
- cilantro, chopped
- Set the chicken breasts in a casserole with a tight-fitting lid. Mix the lime juice and honey together and pour over them. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
- Add dry spice to a heavy-bottomed frying pan on medium heat, stirring until they darken and become fragrant–this will take about 3-5 minutes. Remove the spices from the heat. Put this mixture into a medium sized bowl.
- Put the pan back on medium heat, and cook the shallots in the oil, stirring constantly until they turn deep golden. Add ginger, chili and garlic, and cook, stirring, until the shallots are a deep reddish brown, the garlic is golden. Remove the mixture from the pan, discard the chili and puree into a fine paste. Add to the spice mixture, then stir in the pumpkin and coconut milk.
- Using a whisk, beat the yogurt into the mix.
- Pour over the chicken pieces, and put a piece of foil over the top of the casserole before fitting the lid tightly over it. Allow chicken to marinate in the refrigerator.
- While chicken is marinating, preheat the oven at 450 degrees F.
- After marinating for an hour, put the casserole into the oven, and bake for 40 minutes.
- Scatter cilantro over the chicken. Best served over basmati rice.
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This recipe was ok, but I would suggest two changes that i feel would make significant but simple improvements. 1. I do not feel that the technique used with the dried chili really contributed any heat or taste to the recipe; I think it would be more successful if incorporated differently. 2. The sauce needs salt! I notice that no salt is incorporated into the sauce; only on the chicken. I feel that the addition of an appropriate amount of salt, maybe 1 - 2 tsp, would have helped to bring out the complex flavors in the sauce. Lastly I did find that I needed to cook this recipe for longer than suggested in order to get my chicken cooked through.1Reply