Chickpea Tikka Masala

Apr 14, 2014 by Mark Godbeer

Coming from Durban, curry is definitely one of my preferred dishes. Its variety of rich spices and herbs makes it such a fragrant and belly grumbling dining experience.

This dish is great for a dinner opener; the smells alone will sate your guests palates, and the wine pairing possibilities are endless. You could serve this with naan bread or even rotis, but if you do, serve this as the main by adding a protein such as lamb shoulder or chicken thigh.

The light crunchiness from the papadum and the spicy fresh hot sauce make this a real interactive and adventurous meal. Just be sure to make extra for crew.

Feeds 10-14, depending on portion size.




For the curry:

2 tbsp butter

1 red onion, finely chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp ground cumin

2 tsp paprika

1 tsp fresh ginger, chopped

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp curry powder (Madras brand is great)

1/4 tsp ground turmeric

2 cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1 1/2 cups pureed tomato

1 cup plain yogurt

4 sprigs fresh cilantro, washed

1 box Papadums


For the cilantro chili sauce:

2 cups fresh cilantro, washed

1 lemon, juiced

4 tbsp sweet chili sauce

4 cloves garlic

2 jalapenos, deseeded

Salt, pepper to taste


In a cast-iron or heavy-bottomed pot on a medium heat, melt the butter and sweat off the onions, 5-7 minutes.

Add the garlic and cook 2 minutes more.

Add the cumin, paprika, ginger, salt, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, curry powder and turmeric and cook 2-5 minutes more. Take in all the aromas. This dish certainly becomes fragrant from the early stages.

Add the chickpeas and sauté 2 minutes.

Stir in the tomato puree. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low and cook on low-med heat for 10 minutes, stirring frequently.

In a separate bowl, whip the yogurt for 1 minute.

Gradually add the whipped yogurt to the curry mixture, whisking frequently as you incorporate.

Cook 20 minutes more on low heat as the curry thickens, stirring every few minutes.

While the curry cooks, make the sauce. In a blender, place all the ingredients and blend for 30-60 seconds. It should be a vibrant green. Taste and season accordingly. If the sauce tastes a little bitter, add more sweet chili.

Place the papadums in the microwave and cook according to the makers instructions. (They usually take a minute so they can literally be made at the last minute.)

Check the curry and season accordingly. Place the curry in a bowl, garnish with fresh cilantro. Serve with cilantro hot sauce and papadums. Enjoy.


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