The Cookbook Challenge: Week 2 Recipe – Chicken Tikka

by April@MyFoodTrail on December 1, 2009

in Chicken, Cookbook Challenge 2010, Cooking, Mains, Recipes

Theme: Indian
Cookbook: The Complete Chicken Cookbook

Apologies to everyone who was wondering whether I had abandoned the Cookbook Challenge only one week in!! I probably should have posted that I was going to be without internet access for a while! I have been in Adelaide since the middle of last week for hubby’s cousin’s wedding. Hubby and I were part of the bridal party so pretty much for our whole time in Adelaide, we were attending family events! We had a great trip, but unfortunately didn’t get much time to explore Adelaide.

I actually completed this week’s Cookbook Challenge early last week, but didn’t get a chance to post about it before we left for Adelaide. Well, better late than never right?! I will again collating everyone’s recipes for Week 2.

Week 2’s theme was Indian and my least favourite theme. Me & Indian just don’t get along! Every time I have Indian food, I inevitably spend the night visiting the toilet! I find the food very rich, spice spicy and a lot of the time, too oily. Maybe we have just had bad Indian food or ordered the wrong thing. As a result, I never cook Indian food at home and do not eat it when dining out if I have a choice.

As you can probably guess, I don’t have any Indian cookbooks so I had to scour through my other cookbooks to find an Indian recipe. We also had the constraint that it needed to be a quick weeknight meal since I had to cook it early on in the week before we went to Adelaide.

Tandoori chicken was a popular recipe, appearing in numerous cookbooks and even numerous times in one particular cookbook! Hubby didn’t feel like tandoori chicken so asked me to choose something else. I found a recipe for chicken tikka which seemed easy enough for a weeknight meal. All you needed to do was add all the spices along with yogurt to the chicken and marinate overnight before grilling or frying. The recipe was supposed to make chicken skewers but I changed it to pan fried chicken.

I don’t have any of the Indian spices so I had to go out and purchase them all! I hope I am able to use them again in other cuisines!

My newly purchased Indian spices


Chicken Tikka

750g chicken thigh fillets, cut into cubes
¼ onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp grated lemon rind
3 tsp ground coriander
3 tsp ground cumin
3 tsp garam masala
1/3 cup (90g) plain natural yogurt
1 tsp salt
Oil for frying

1. In a food processor, finely chop the onion, garlic, ginger, lemon juice, rind, coriander, cumin and garam masala.

2. Stir in the yogurt and salt to the spice mixture.

3. Place chicken in a shallow bowl or dish and cover with mixture. Marinate for several hours or overnight, covered, in the refrigerator.

4. Heat a bit of oil in a frypan and fry until chicken is cooked through. I had quite a lot of liquid in the pan so I removed the excess liquid.

Results: The chicken turned out a greyish colour and wasn’t visually appealing – it looked rather bland. I’ve never had chicken tikka, or at least not recently that I can remember what it is supposed to taste and look like. When I Googled chicken tikka, it seems it is supposed to be a red colour and chicken tikka masala is the chicken tikka pieces in a creamy red curry. The chicken had a nice Indian spices smell and tasted ok but I wouldn’t choose to make it again. I served the chicken with steamed vegetables and yellow rice. I added some tumeric and leftover coconut cream from last week’s recipe to the rice before I cooked it in a rice cooker. I only put about a teaspoon of tumeric so I got a shock when I saw how yellow the rice was when cooked! It wasn’t even slightly yellow before it was cooked!

Would I make it again? No, it doesn’t suit our tastes.

Just a reminder that Week 3 is under way with the theme of “hor d’oeuvres”.

Over & Out, Rilsta xx

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Arale79 December 1, 2009 at 10:35 pm

welcome back, you will definitely used up your spices i think alot of chinese ,nonya and malay food actually use coriander , cumin seed and turmeric.


Iron Chef Shellie December 1, 2009 at 10:51 pm

Oh noooo!!! beige chicken… =( well at least you know never to make that recipe again.

Yay for wedding fun though!


Arale79 December 1, 2009 at 11:05 pm

oh another thing, if you get cut, splash some turmeric powder and it will stop bleeding ( regular usage for me 🙁 )


Conor @ HoldtheBeef December 2, 2009 at 1:51 am

Last time I had to buy turmeric, the only one they had left in the shop was something crazy like 1 kg of it so I now have enough turmeric to last me until I'm old and grey.

Pity it wasn't a roaring success, but I have high hopes for the horse doovers 😀


Kat (Spatula, Spoon and Saturday) December 2, 2009 at 7:31 am

we are going to have to take you to bombay by night and start you on something mild.

you should have come over get the spices off me instead of buying all that. i have plenty 🙂

at least you tried. i once spilled a bit of tumeric on the kitchen floor and it stayed yellow for about a month.


imasugarjunkie December 2, 2009 at 10:17 am

Awww what a shame it didnt end up working out! I guess this is what the cookbook challenge is all about – trying new recipes you wouldn't normally try!


Maree December 2, 2009 at 1:10 pm

Good try! I find Indian food often fails to look particularly appetising. I love that experiments don't work out sometimes- makes it so much sweeter when they do!


Esz December 2, 2009 at 4:10 pm

That must have been a dodgy recipe cos chicken tikka is one of my fave Indian dishes. It does usually look more red too. Interesting.

If you want to try good Indian then Orion Vintage Indian on Bridge Rd, Richmond is really really excellent. They make your sauces as hot as you like so you can choose mild. And everything is very fresh with no runny, oily horrible sauces.


Agnes December 2, 2009 at 8:34 pm

Pity that it wasn't to your tastes – I'm sure (I hope!) that you'll end up using your spices. It's a shame that it looked so grey too! Was there a picture in the book?


Ellie December 3, 2009 at 4:47 pm

I was taken aback when I saw the greyish chicken… Chicken Tikka that I know should be reddish. After all, I am glad it still taste good 🙂


Anshika December 3, 2009 at 5:13 pm

The chicken tikka we usually make is reddish in color and that is because we add a dash of red food color. And instead of frying we grill it in the oven. May be then you could get a better taste.


Rilsta December 4, 2009 at 9:42 am

Hi Arale79: I hope so! I have never used any of those spices in the past but I guess now I am trying new recipes so I might use them now! Wow, I never knew you could use the tumeric that way!! Does your finger turn yellow?

Hi Shellie: Yeah, have put a post it note against that recipe!!

Hi Conor: OMG, 1kg of tumeric?! I am wondering what to do with my 25g jar! 🙂

Hi Kat: Yeah, I probably should have, but at least now I will try to use them more! I will have to try Indian food with people in the know I think!

Hi imasugarjunkie: Yeah, that's the good part about this challenge!

Hi Maree: I've had many recipe disasters before, but it just means I know not to make that recipe again!

Hi Esz: Hehe, I do think it is a dodge recipe. Thanks for the suggestion about Orion Vintage Indian! I should go try what really chicken tikka tastes like!!

Hi Agnes: Thanks! There was a picture in the book and it wasn't red like the pictures I saw on Google. Maybe it was just a dodgey recipe!

Hi Ellie: Yeah, it looks like it should have been red!

Hi Anshika: Ooh, thanks for letting me know! I will have to try it at an Indian restaurant!


Cali December 4, 2009 at 6:49 pm

Awesome article… Very informative too. For portable charcoal grill visit A portable charcoal grill is best suited for outdoor picnics and backyard barbeques. These come essentially in two types- Kettle grills and Braziers.




petitechef December 5, 2009 at 7:01 am

sounds like a ton of awesome flavors!! YUM!! Great site!


Rilsta December 8, 2009 at 11:10 am

Hi Cali: Thanks!

Hi petitechef: Thanks!


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