Chicken Tikka

Tikka is an Indian dish of meat marinated in spices.  This is the recipe I’ve been using for years as a base to my Tikka Masala.  The yogurt and spices in the marinade make the chicken so tender, and it’s a perfect appetizer served with the yogurt dip or topped on a green salad.  If you like spicy food, you should add some red pepper flakes to the marinade.


Ingredients (Serves 8-10):

6 garlic cloves, minced
4 tsp. finely grated peeled ginger
4 tsp. ground turmeric
2 tsp. garam masala
2 tsp. ground coriander
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 1/2 cups whole-milk yogurt
1 tbsp. kosher salt
3 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts
12-15 wooden skewers, soaked in water

Method: In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients except chicken and stir well.  Cut chicken into cubes or long 1” thick pieces.  Put chicken into the marinade and refrigerate for at least one hour.  You can marinate up to 4 hours.  Remove chicken pieces and thread on the soaked wooden skewers (the purpose of soaking them is prevent them from burning).  If you prefer to leave a long piece of skewer (for a handle), cover with foil before going onto the grill or broiler.  You can cook these two different ways, by grilling or broiling in the oven.  If grilling, place the skewers on a hot grill rack and cook about 3 minutes per side, until chicken is cooked through.  If broiling, set your oven broiler to high heat and put the upper oven rack 6” below the broiling unit at the top of the oven.  Line a broiler pan with foil and spray with non-stick cook spray.  Place chicken skewers on foil and broil for 9-12 minutes, until browned and done. Depending on your broiler, it could take longer.  Remove from oven (or grill) and serve with yogurt dip.

Yogurt Dip Ingredients:

1 cup whole milk yogurt
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tbsp. cilantro, chopped
zest of one lime
1/2 tsp. salt

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and let sit for 30 minutes before serving.

AppetizersSavanna Givens