You can use boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts. We prefer dark meat, but go with what you like.
For the chicken marinade:
- 28 oz (800g) boneless and skinless chicken thighs or breasts cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1/2 cup plain yogurt
- 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger (or finely grated)
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1 teaspoon of salt
For the sauce:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons ghee (or 1 tbs butter + 1 tbs oil)
- 1 large onion, sliced or chopped
- 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon ginger, minced or finely grated
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 14 oz (400 g) crushed tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder (adjust to your taste preference)
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
- 1 cup of heavy or thickened cream (or evaporated milk to save calories)
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kasoori methi (or dried fenugreek leaves)
In a bowl, combine chicken with all of the ingredients for the chicken marinade; let marinate for 30 minutes to an hour (or overnight if time allows). Heat oil in a large skillet or pot over medium-high heat. When sizzling, add chicken pieces in batches of two or three, making sure not to crowd the pan. Fry until browned for only 3 minutes on each side. Set aside and keep warm. (You will finish cooking the chicken in the sauce.)
Heat butter or ghee in the same pan. Fry the onions until they start to sweat (about 6 minutes) while scraping up any browned bits stuck on the bottom of the pan. Add garlic and ginger and sauté for 1 minute until fragrant, then add ground coriander, cumin and garam masala. Let cook for about 20 seconds until fragrant, while stirring occasionally. Add crushed tomatoes, chili powder and salt. Let simmer for about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally until sauce thickens and becomes a deep brown red colour. Remove from heat, scoop mixture into a blender and blend until smooth. You may need to add a couple tablespoons of water to help it blend (up to 1/4 cup). Work in batches depending on the size of your blender.
Pour the puréed sauce back into the pan. Stir the cream, sugar and crushed kasoori methi (or fenugreek leaves) through the sauce. Add the chicken with juices back into the pan and cook for an additional 8-10 minutes until chicken is cooked through and the sauce is thick and bubbling. Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve with fresh, hot basmati rice or naan bread.
OPTIONAL: To thin out the sauce, add a couple tablespoons of ghee or butter at the end of cooking, and gently simmer it through. Alternatively, add a small amount of water.