Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Chicken Tikka Masala

We have been using the crock pot quite a bit recently. Our daily lives are driven by work, school and after-school activites and there's just no time (most evenings) to prepare, serve and eat a family dinner. On Tuesday's, for example, Ms Fussy Eater has guitar from 5 to 6; Mr Teenager has guitar from 7 to 8; and Hubby has his music group from 8:45. Anything we start preparing from 6:15 (when we get in) won't be ready for us all to eat before 7, so usually we eat when Mr Teenage comes home, and before Hubby has to leave. It's a logistics nightmare!

Chicken tikka masala with rice

So, this recipe from the Australian Women's Weekly easy slow cooking look particularly easy and appealing. Both children have recently discovered a love of "chicken curry" and they both like the flavours and the spices.

Erin Dine-ins
When shopping for the ingredients, however, we couldn't get a jar of tikka masala paste! The supermarket was just out - an empty space on the shelf where it should have been. This was a drawback - using a different paste would make a curry, but it wouldn't be chicken tikka masala. As we progressed around the shelves however, we came across a new product from Erin called Dine-ins, which includes a tikka masala version. Basically it is a little pot (very small) of concentrated paste and another pot of spices. We decided to give it a try.

The recipe calls for 1kg skinless chicken thigh cutlets. We used 4 chicken oyster thighs and 4 chicken oyster thigh legs. This was more than enough for 4 people. In fact, hubby has been bringing it for lunch on at least two separate occasions.


In the morning, between preparing breakfast and getting the kids ready for school, I skinned the chicken pieces. This was the most time consuming piece of the whole recipe. They were then put into the crock pot with 1 can tinned tomatoes; 2 onions sliced thinly; and the contents of the Dine-ins spice and paste. We stirred this together and then left it cooking on low for the rest of the day.

Later that evening, all we had to prepare was some rice.

The Outcome

This produced a really lovely curry, with great flavour, in a chunky sauce. The recipe added 60ml pouring cream, but we didn't think it was necessary. To get a creamier texture, you could certainly add it. The chicken was tender and came off the bones very easily.

There was more than enough curry for four of us, we could probably have fed six people. Mr Teenager went back to for a second helping.

The Verdict

This was a big hit with the whole family. Although it was really quite spicey, Ms Fussy Easter finished everything on her plate and said it was "very nice". Mr Teenager, as mentioned, had two platefulls and said it was delicious. Hubby was also very satisfied.

Since then, we've managed to procure a jar of tikka masala paste, but we've also purchased a couple of other Erin Dine-ins to try them out.

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