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Microwave Chicken Tikka Masala From Scratch

Chicken tikka masala. From scratch. In a microwave. Yep, you heard me. I’m making the Indian curry classic in the humble kitchen appliance, from the charred, marinated chicken to the epic sauce that’s so good, you’ll want to swim in it. And you would not BELIEVE how phenom it tastes. Yep, modern microwaves are chock full of tech to ensure your food is chock full of flavourama and I am here for it. So go ahead. Make things easier. Quicker. And a darn sight more impressive than takeout.

In partnership with Panasonic Australia


Microwave Chicken Tikka Masala From Scratch

25 minutes + marinating
35 minutes

½ brown onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely grated
1 tbsp finely grated ginger
2 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder*
1 tbsp sweet paprika
1 tsp ground turmeric
2 tsp ground coriander
4 green cardamom pods, lightly crushed
1 cup tomato passata
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ghee
2 tbsp natural yoghurt, mixed with ½ cup water
4 poppadums
vegetable oil, for brushing
coriander (cilantro) sprigs, to serve
cooked basmati rice, to serve

Chicken tikka:
6 chicken thigh fillets, cut into roughly 4cm (1½“) chunks
juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp salt
¼ cup natural yoghurt
1 tbsp garam masala
1 tbsp Kashmiri chilli powder
¼ tsp tandoori colour* (optional)
3 garlic cloves, finely grated
1 tbsp finely grated ginger
2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp ghee, melted
4–5 bamboo skewers, soaked in water for 20 minutes

  • Step 1

    For the chicken tikka, place the chicken pieces into a bowl and add the lemon juice and salt. Stir to combine then set aside to rest for 10 minutes. Using your hands, remove the pieces of chicken from the lemon-salt marinade, giving them a slight squeeze to drain them off as much as possible. Transfer the drained pieces to another large clean bowl. Next, add the remaining tikka ingredients and mix. Marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight, if possible.

  • Step 2

    I totally recommend wearing gloves for this next part – that tandoor colour is super intense and will definitely stain your hands! Skewer the chicken onto the soaked bamboo skewers. Place the skewers on the microwave tray and press the Combination button. Press Start (to select the Combo 1 setting). Set the timer for 20 minutes or cook until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the tray from the microwave. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, take the chicken off the skewers and leave on the tray with the chicken juices.

  • Step 3

    To make the curry, place the onion, garlic, ginger, spices, passata, sugar, salt and ghee in a large microwave-safe bowl. Mix until well combined. Cover with a plate and microwave on high, stirring halfway through, for 10 minutes. Then add the chicken and any juices from the tray. Mix well. Then mix through the yoghurt mixture, plus an extra 1 cup of water. Return to the microwave and cook for a further 1 minute to allow all the ingredients to make friends.

  • Step 4

    Meanwhile, lightly brush the poppadums with oil. Place on a microwaveable plate, top with a couple of sheets of kitchen paper, then transfer to the microwave and cook on high (900W) for 1 minute.

  • Step 5

    Transfer the chicken tikka to a serving bowl and top with coriander. Serve with poppadums and rice.

  • Notes

    – This recipe was made using the Panasonic NN-DS59NBQPQ 4-in-1 Steam Combination Microwave Oven with Grill.

    – Tandoori colour is a red powder available from Indian or Asian grocery stores. It adds a characteristic red/orange colour and that restaurant-style ‘tandoori’ look to your chicken.

    – Kashmiri chill ground chilli powder is made from Kashmiri chillies, a variety known for its lower heat rating and intense red colour. It’s widely used in Indian cuisine, especially in tandoori and butter chicken. It’s well worth seeking out online or at an Asian grocer to give this dish its colour and smoky flavour.

We have collaborated with Panasonic Australia to produce this content and may get compensation from content or collect a share of sales from links, if you decide to shop from them. This helps support our content creation. I only partner with companies and products that I’d happily recommend to my audience.

Marion's Kitchen is for everyone who finds joy in flavour and happiness in every bite. Marion's Kitchen is for everyone who finds joy in flavour and happiness in every bite.

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August 8, 2023

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