Roasted Chicken Masala

In today’s recipe I’ll be teaching you how to make chicken masala very simply and very quickly. Chicken masala (or chicken curry as it is more popularly known as) is THE classic party dish made at all Punjabi dinner parties. My brother and I used to get so excited when my Mum used to make this when we were younger-it was only made on Sundays when we had family get-togethers at my grandmother’s house or on special occasions. Served hot with basmati rice or fresh tandoori rotis, it is sure to go down well! Infact, it is particularly popular when served at The Spice Club. This version of the classic chicken curry recipe ensures the chicken is really succulent and flavourful as we marinade the chicken and roast it before adding the masala. It can sometimes be difficult when cooking boneless chicken in a tomato masala to make sure the chicken does not turn tough in texture, but this recipe does not fail in that department. It’s also a really straight forward recipe and is quick to make! Check it out:

Serves 2-4

What we need:

For the marination:
500g boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into bitesized cubes
2 tbsp yoghurt
2 cloves garlic, grated
2″ ginger ginger, grated
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp coriander powder
Handful chopped fresh coriander
2 tbsp olive oil
For Masala:
4 tbsp olive oil
4 whole cloves
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
1 green cardomom pod
2 medium sized onions
3 cloves garlic
2″ ginger
1 green chilli
1 tsp salt
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tin plum tomato
1/2 cup fresh coriander
2 tbsp greek yoghurt

How we do:

  • Preheat oven to 250 C
  • In a bowl, mix the chicken with the all of the ingredients listed under “marination”.
  • Place marinaded chicken in an oven proof dish dish and place in oven. Cook for 5-6 minutes.
  • Whilst the chicken is cooking, in a food processor, add the onions, garlic, ginger, green chilli, salt, garam masala, turmeric powder, coriander powder and chilli powder.
  • At this point, turn the chicken over and cook for a further 5-6 minutes. Remove from the oven.
  • Heat the olive oil in a pan. Add the cloves, cumin seeds, bay leaves, cinnamon stick and the cardamom pods to the oil. Once they begin to sizzle, add the processed masala paste.
  • Mix and cook until golden brown, constantly stirring every few minutes
  • Once golden, add the plum tomatoes and mix well. Continue to stir and cook until the oil separates from the masala.
  • Now add the chicken. Add the greek yoghurt and sprinkle on the fresh coriander and cook for 5-7 minutes.
  • Serve hot with rice or chapatis. Enjoy 🙂


Roasted Lamb & Spinach Curry

Lamb and Spinach Curry is the ultimate dinner party dish and is perfect for special occasions. In this recipe, the lamb is slow roasted in order to ensure that the sauce thickens nicely and that the lamb tenderises perfectly so that it melts in your mouth. I also pre-marinaded the lamb in an aromatic yoghurt sauce so that each individual piece of lamb has it own flavour. I made this dish at a recent Spice Club dinner and it went down really well!  I think the key to this dish is cooking it slowly, yes it does take a little longer but it’s well worth the wait-believe! Best served with basmati rice or freshly made hot chappatis nom nom nom nom…
Recipe shown below serves 12. You can either divide by how many servings you want it to yield or use http://www.easysurf.cc/recipe.htm.

Serves 12

What we need:
For the marinade:-
1000g lamb, boneless leg cut into 2.5cm cubes
4 garlic cloves, grated
2″ ginger, grated
4 tbsp cream
6 tbsp yoghurt
4 tsp salt
2 tsp kasturi methi (fenugreek leaves)
2 tsp chilli powder
2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp coriander powder
2 tsp meat tenderiser powder
For Masala:-
3 tbsp olive oil
6 onions, roughly chopped
3 tbsp olive oil
5 bay leaves
5 black cardomoms
1 stick cinnamon
2 tsp cumin seeds
3 cloves
3 cloves garlic
2″ ginger
2 tsp salt (or according to taste)
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp chilli powder
2 tsp garam masala
pinch of pepper
2 green birdseye chillis, chopped
3/4 tin plum tomatos
2 handfuls of fresh coriander
300g pureed spinach

How we do:

  • In a bowl: Mix together the lamb and all of the ingredients listed above under the ‘marinade’ title. Refridgerate overnight.
  • Preheat the oven to 170 C.
  • In a large open pan, heat the olive oil. Fry off the onions until golden and tender. Remove and grind in a food processor.
  • Heat 3 tbsp olive oil in an oven proof pan. Add the whole spices listed above. when they begin to sizzle, add the ginger and garlic. Mix well and add the remaining ground spices and salt.
  • Cook for a couple of minutes whilst stirring. Now add the ground onion paste to the pan as well as the green chillies.
  • Mix well and cook on medium heat for 3-5 minutes , stirring every couple of minutes. Now add the tomatos and fresh corriander. Cook the masala for a few minutes until the oil begins to separate.
  • Now add the marinated lamb and mix well.
  • Add 2 glasses of water to the lamb masala and place in the oven.
  • Check the lamb and stir it every 10 minutes. When you do this,if you think the gravy (masala) has thickened, you add some more water.
  • Keep an eye on the lamb curry and cook until the lamb is tender (I cooked it for about 3 hours). Once tender (you can tell if the lamb is fully cooked if it breaks apart easily) add the spinach and mix well until it blends with the masala.
  • Remove from oven. (NB. You can remove the whole spices from the lamb curry if you want).
  • Garnish with cream and fresh coriander.

Spicy Okra (Bhindi) with Yellow Peppers and Onions

I love making this okra dish. It’s one my brother’s favourite dishes and he ensures that it is made at least once a week in the house. He does nothing to help his desire become a reality of course, apart from vocalizing his wants in the kitchen. However, luckily for him, I’m an amazing sister (and it’s ridiculously easy to make, but don’t tell him that). Best served with chapatis and a lot of people eat it with yoghurt too. The good thing about okra is that it can be made in so many ways-I think this is my third okra recipe now! Also, it’s really nutritious.
Check it out, let me know how what you think 🙂

Serves 4:

What we need:
1lb okra
3 tbsp olive oil
1 onion sliced
1/2 yellow pepper, diced
2 tomato roughly diced
1 tsp cumin seeds
Pinch of asafoetida powder
1 1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp chilli powder
1/4 tsp amchur (mango powder)
Handful fresh coriander (cilantro)

How we do:

  • Heat oil in pan. Add the cumin seeds. Once they begin to sizzle, add okra, salt, turmeric powder and asafoetida powder. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring continuously on medium heat.
  • Add the onion, yellow pepper and the rest of the spices except amchur. Mix and cook until you see the sticky threads disappear.
  • At this point, add the tomatoes, fresh coriander and amchur and cook for a further 5 minutes.
  • When you see the oil has separated from the okra, your dish is ready!
  • BALLE BALLE! Enjoy 🙂