How fun is your spice cabinet? Do you try new spices once a week, or is the most exotic spice in your cabinet garlic powder? If it is, there’s nothing to be ashamed of. You just need to step out of your comfort zone a little. I know the first time I ever tried turmeric, it was when I had tandoori chicken. Mixed with other spices, it added so much earthy depth of flavor to the chicken.
More: 20 heavenly golden elixirs made with turmeric
If you’ve never had turmeric before, it has ginger and orange notes, but it can also be a little bitter. It's most commonly used in Indian and Southeast Asian cooking.
Here's a simple chicken tikka masala dish for trying out turmeric. The chicken is delicious even without the coconut sauce if you're not quite ready for that adventure.
More: 20 recipes that show why turmeric is everyone's favorite food trend
Chicken tikka masala in coconut-turmeric sauce recipe
Prep time: 5 minutes | Cook time: 16 minutes | Total time: 21 minutes
- 4 chicken thighs, skins on
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds, crushed
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon ginger, minced
- 1 (13-ounce) can coconut milk
- 8 ounces tomato sauce
- 2 teaspoons turmeric, divided
- 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
- Salt, to taste
- Pepper, to taste
- Olive oil
- Rice, for serving
- In a large bowl, mix together the salt, pepper, 1 teaspoon of turmeric, the cumin, cayenne pepper, paprika, ground ginger and mustard seeds. Add the chicken, and coat well.
- To a sauté pan over medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the chicken thighs, skins down.
- Cook the chicken for 6 – 8 minutes on each side, until browned.
- Remove the chicken from the pan, and discard any drippings.
- Add a drizzle of olive oil to the sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the minced garlic and ginger, and sauté for 30 seconds, until fragrant.
- Add the coconut milk and tomato sauce. Season with the remaining teaspoon of turmeric and salt and pepper, to taste. Stir to combine, and add the chicken thighs.
- Once the sauce has boiled, reduce to a simmer for 8 minutes.
- Garnish the chicken with cilantro leaves, and serve with white rice.
More: Indian-inspired coconut curry quinoa