Slow Cooked Chicken Tikka Masala

So here’s a combination of two things I’ve come to love: the Indian dish ‘Chicken Tikka Masala’ and the ease of slow cooking with a crock pot. I first started making Tikka Masala from jarred sauce from Trader Joe’s which is very good but I’m happy to have learned to make my own sauce and finally put to use the bag of garam masala spice I bought. I followed this recipe from the EatLiveRun blog as a guide.

I used a value pack of chicken thighs with skin and bone, removed the skin but left the meat whole on the bone. Coat and toss chicken with seasonings and let marinate in a large bowl for 10 minutes with:

  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Coriander (aka Cilantro when fresh)
  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 cup Yogurt
Brown the chicken thighs (half at a time in a skillet) with a pat of butter then transfer to crock pot. I’ve found this common practice with slow cooker recipes- to brown or braise the meat prior to putting in the crock pot.

In the same pan you browned the chicken in, add a chunk of butter and sautee:

  • 1 Large diced Onion
  • 6 cloves minced Garlic
  • 2-3″ piece of fresh minced Ginger
  • 3 Tablespoons Garam Masala
  • 1 Tablespoon Salt
  • 30 oz. can of Crushed Tomatoes
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar
Scrape all the caramelized brown chicken juices from the bottom of pan into the sauce for flavoring and bring to a boiling simmer. Pour over chicken and add 1 whole Jalapeno Pepper (stem removed and pierced several times with a fork). Set crock pot on Low for 5 hours. About 20- 30 minutes prior to dinner, start cooking some rice. The chicken will be fall-off-the-bone tender. 10 minutes before ready, whisk in a bowl:
  • 2 teaspoons Cornstarch and
  • 1-½ cup Half n Half or Heavy Cream
Add cream mixture to sauce along with 2 cans of drained peas or 1 bag of frozen peas and cover for 10 minutes more, allowing the sauce to thicken. Serve over brown basmati rice. This food goes a long way – you’ll have lots of leftovers for the week. Such a ghoulish looking pot o’crock for Halloween!