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Better than Take Out Tikka Masala

For those days when you don't want to take out, or maybe don't have an Indian restaurant nearby, our Masala Paste plus a few pantry ingredients hits the spot! Add some naan or rice and you've got a cozy comforting meal.



Ingredients:

1.5 lbs of protein/veggies in bite-size pieces (can use chicken, tofu, paneer, cauliflower, chickpeas, etc) **See notes for marinading the chicken**

2tbs neutral oil

1tbs cumin seeds

1/2 c canned diced tomatoes

1tbs tomato paste

1/2 c water

1tbs sugar (can omit but the majority of restaurants do use some sweetener)

salt and cayenne powder to taste

Cream (optional for garnish)

Chopped cilantro (optional for garnish)


Method:

For protein:

Brown paneer, chicken, tofu or protein of choice in a pan with about 1 tbs of oil. Remove and place on a plate while making the sauce. If using only veggies or chickpeas, you can omit the browning step.

For the Sauce:

Add 1 tbs of oil to a saucepan.

Once the pan is warm, add cumin seeds and cook until you hear them begin to sputter.

Carefully Masala Paste, diced tomatoes, and tomato paste stir consistently until for 5-7 minutes until warm and darker in color.

Slowly add 1/2 cup water and cook for about 5-7 more minutes on medium low heat as the sauce begins to thicken.

Add cayenne (omit if you prefer it less spicy) and salt.

Add protein and/or veggies to saucepan and simmer for about 5-7 min.

Stir in sugar and cream.

Simmer for another 3-4 minutes.

Top with finely chopped cilantro and more cream if desired.


Serve with basmati rice or naan.


***If you are using chicken, marinate the chicken for at least 3 hours (or overnight) in the following:

3/4 cup plain yogurt, 2 cloves minced garlic, 1tsp minced ginger, 2tsp Mirch Masala Blend, and 1/2 tsp salt


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