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A brief about...

History of Tikka Masala

The origins of Tikka Masala spice mix are somewhat disputed, but it is widely believed to have originated in the United Kingdom rather than in India, despite its association with Indian cuisine. Tikka Masala is a popular and iconic dish in British Indian cuisine, and it has gained immense popularity not only in the UK but also around the world.

The exact origins of Tikka Masala are somewhat unclear, with various stories and claims surrounding its creation. One popular theory suggests that it was invented in the 1960s by a Bangladeshi chef in Glasgow, Scotland. According to this account, a customer in a restaurant complained that the chicken tikka was too dry, so the chef improvised by adding a tomato-based sauce to the dish, resulting in the creation of Tikka Masala.

Another theory proposes that the dish originated in the Punjab region of India or Pakistan and was brought to the UK by South Asian immigrants. However, this theory remains largely speculative and lacks concrete evidence.

Regardless of its precise origins, Tikka Masala has become an integral part of British Indian cuisine and is enjoyed by people of diverse backgrounds. It is typically made using a spice mix consisting of a variety of aromatic spices. The exact composition of the spice mix can vary, but it often includes spices like cumin, coriander, paprika, turmeric, ginger, garlic, cinnamon, and cardamom. These spices combine to create a flavorful and vibrant blend.

The spice mix is typically used to marinate pieces of chicken or other meats, which are then cooked in a tandoor (traditional clay oven), grilled, or pan-fried. The marinated meat is usually skewered and then cooked until tender and slightly charred. The cooked meat is then added to a rich tomato-based sauce, which is infused with additional spices and cream. The resulting dish, Tikka Masala, is known for its creamy and mildly spiced flavor profile.

In addition to chicken, Tikka Masala spice mix can also be used with other proteins like lamb or paneer (Indian cheese). Vegetarian versions of the dish are also popular, with vegetables or tofu substituted for the meat.

Tikka Masala is typically served with basmati rice or naan bread, and it has become a staple in Indian restaurants worldwide. It is often regarded as one of the most famous and beloved dishes in British Indian cuisine, highlighting the cultural fusion and culinary innovation that can emerge from cross-cultural encounters.

Delhi Tikka Masala is my humble take on this iconic spice. Besides being used for BBQ’ing, this sauce can be used to make a simmer sauce which can be used to make healthy, flavorful and #quickmeals.