How to cook… Malai Tikka

Recipes

Serves 4 as a starter

Because the red-coloured Chicken Tikka is famous the world over its lesser-known cousin Malai Tikka often gets overlooked. But this paler tikka, marinated in cottage cheese, cream and handful of spices, is perfect for milder tastes while still providing that trademark tandoori taste. It makes a great starter to get the evening underway when you have ordered a hot, spicy main curry.

What you need
• 400g chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
• 3 Tablespoons lemon juice

Marinade
• 100g cream cheese
• 200g cream
• 1 teaspoon garlic powder
• 1 teaspoon ginger paste
• 1 green chilli, finely chopped
• 1 Tablespoon coriander, chopped
• 0.25 cardamom powder
• 0.25 clove powder

How you make it
1. Squeeze the lemon over the chicken, rub it in well and leave for 15 minutes. This will degrease the chicken and also helps the chicken absorb the marinade.
2. Shake off the excess lemon and coat the pieces in the marinade. Leave for at least 15 minutes but preferably 12 hours.
3. Preheat your oven to 170 ºC. Place the pieces on a baking tray, ensuring all the pieces are kept well apart and cook for 15 minutes, turning once. Check one of the largest pieces to ensure it’s cooked. If not return to the oven.
4. Serve with pickles, chutneys and salads.

CHEF’S TIP
To achieve the blackened edges you get in the tandoor turn up the grill to a high heat while the chicken is in the over and cook in the grill for the last 2 minutes.

If you like this you should try our
Medium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Feet Curry (Africa)

This is one of my favourite starters. Would malai to you?

How to cook… Indo-Chinese Rice

Recipes

Serves 4 as a side dish

This Indo-Chinese Rice combines the best of Indian and Chinese flavours and is excellent with Indo-Chinese dishes or to add a little extra to dishes such as Aloo Ghobi and Bombay Aloo.

What you need
• 300g Basmati Rice
• 0.5 teaspoon oil
• 2 garlic cloves, chopped into slivers
• 200g peas
• 1 green chilli, chopped
• 2 Tablespoons soya sauce
• 1 teaspoon vinegar
• 2 spring onions, chopped to garnish (optional)

How you make it
1. Cook the Basmati Rice and allow to cool.
2. Heat the oil, add the garlic and fry for 1 minute.
3. Add the peas and green chilli and fry for a few seconds. If you are using frozen peas you will need to cook them for a bit longer.
4. Add the soya sauce and vinegar, mix well and fry for 1 minute.
5. Add the rice and stir fry until everything is warmed through.
6. Serve, garnished with the (optional) spring onions.

CHEF’S TIP
Avoid adding salt as the soya sauce already contains a lot of salt.

If you like this you should try our
Medium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Feet Curry (Africa)

Don’t rush this dish. It’s not a rice to the finish.

How to cook… North Indian Handi

Recipes

Serves 2 as a main dish

Handi refers to the broad-based pots in which the dish is traditionally cooked. Handi pots are used all over the sub-continent resulting in thousands of versions of this chicken dish. This is the archetypal North Indian Handi, courtesy of @thecurriedlondoner, producing a glossy, onion and tomato-based gravy, wrapped around boneless chicken thighs, finshed with a splash of cream.

What you need
• 3 Tablespoons oil
• 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 1 onion
• 2 tomatoes
• 1 teaspoon ginger and garlic paste
• 1 fresh long chilli
• 500g boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized chunks
• 2 Tablespoons Kashmiri chilli powder
• 1 teaspoon coriander powder
• 0.5 teaspoon turmeric powder
• 3 Tablespoons yoghurt
• 1 Tablespoon cream
• 1 teaspoon fenugreek leaves
• 0.5 teaspoon garam masala
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 50ml water
• fresh coriander and cream to garnish

How you make it
1. Set a large, lidded pan over a medium-high heat and add the oil. Once hot, add the cumin seeds and cook for 2 minutes.
2. Add finely chopped onions and tomatoes and cook until soft (about 5 minutes). Add the ginger-garlic paste, crispy fried onions and fresh chilli and cook for 3 minutes more. Add a splash of water if needed.
3. Add the chicken, stir thoroughly and cook until selaed on all sides (about 8–10 minutes).
4. Add the chilli powder, coriander, turmeric and yoghurt, stir and cover the pan with a lid and cook over a medium-high heat for 10 minutes. Add a splash of water if needed
5. Add the cream, fenugreek leaves, garam masala and salt, stir and cook for 2 minutes.
6. Add the water and cook, uncovered until the chicken is cooked and the gravy has thickened (about 10 mnutes).
7. Garnish with a generous spinkling of corinader and a drizzle of cream and serve.
• Recipe courtesy @thecurriedlondoner

CHEF’S TIP
If you are cooking the crispy onions yourself use a small amount of oil and keep turning them to ensure they are cooked evenly all over.

If you like this you should try our
Medium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Feet Curry (Africa)

You don’t have need a chef to cook this dish… you can just call a handy man.

How to cook… Goan Fish Curry

Recipes

Serves 4 as a main dish

Goa’s location along the western coast of the country, by the Arabian Sea, means seafood naturally features prominently in its cuisine. Coconut milk, tamarind, juicy white fish and blazing heat from the chillies creates a delicious Goan Fish Curry.

What you need
• 2 Tablespoons oil
• 1 onion, finely chopped
• 3 red chillies, roughly chopped
• 1 teaspoon garlic paste
• 1 teaspoon ginger paste
• 150g coconut milk
• 4 Tablespoons fresh coconut, grated (you can use desiccated coconut but add another 50g coconut milk if you do)
• 1 Tablespoon tamarind chutney
• salt to taste
• 800g any firm white fish, cut into bite-sized pieces

Spice Mix
• 2 curry leaves
• 1 teaspoon chilli powder
• 0.5 turmeric powder
• 0.5 coriander powder
• 0.5 cumin powder

How you make it
1. Heat the oil to a medium heat and add the onions until they start to brown (about 5 minutes)
2. Add the chopped chillies and cook for 1 minute.
3. Add Spice Mix and the garlic and ginger pastes with a splash of water and cook for 2 minutes.
4. Add the coconut milk, fresh coconut and tamarind and reduce until the sauce thickens (about 10 minutes).
5. Add the salt and the fish and cook until the fish is all cooked through (about 5–6 minutes).
6. Let the fish rest for 5 minutes before serving.

CHEF’S TIP
Monkfish has a dense texture and is perfect for this dish.

If you like this you should try our
Medium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Feet Curry (Africa)

Check out 5 Best Goa Curries

Do you want this fish dish sir? … Goan then.

How to cook… Malai Sag Muttar

Recipes

Serves 2 as a side dish

Malai Sag Muttar is a popular dish all over the sub-continent but especially in North India. It is simple dish, with just a few spices added to wilted spinach, onions and peas, and a dash of cream added just before serving.

What you need
• 100g spinach
• 1 onion, finely chopped
• 0.5 chilli powder
• 0.5 garlic
• 0.5 ginger
• 0.5 fenugreek seeds
• 70g peas (frozen are good)
• salt to taste
• 1 Tablespoon cream

How you make it
1. Wash the spinach with hot water in a colander. Drain.
2. Heat oil to a medium heat and fry the onion until it softens (about 3–4 minutes).
3. Add the chilli powder, garlic, ginger, fenugreek and cook for 2 minutes.
4. Add the spinach and cook for 10 minutes until it well softened and wilted.
5. Add the salt and the peas and cook until they are warmed through (about 3–4 minutes).
6. Transfer to a serving bowl and add the cream just before serving.

CHEF’S TIP
This is beat as a slow-burner but if you are really in a rush you can turn up the heat.

If you like this you should try our
Medium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Feet Curry (Africa)

What green and sung by the Beatles? … Peas, Peas, Me.