Tom Kerridge’s Chicken Tikka Masala

Included in our Tuesday Thoughts email this week is this Tom Kerridge recipe that has been tried, tested and recommended by one of our athletes.

As it is, it would score you 3/4 in your food diary. For top marks, swap the rice for a leafy salad with extra virgin olive oil or olives.


1 large skinless chicken crown (1kg)
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the marinade:

Juice of ½ lemon
5cm piece of ginger, grated
4 large garlic cloves, grated
2 tbsp medium Madras curry powder
2 heaped tsp smoked paprika
Large pinch of salt
100g Greek yoghurt (0% fat)

For the curry sauce:

1 tbsp sunflower oil
2 large onions, finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, grated
2.5cm piece of ginger, finely grated
1 tsp ground turmeric
2 tsp paprika
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tbsp tomato puree
400g tin chopped tomatoes
300ml water
1 large red pepper, cored, deseeded and chopped
1 large green pepper, cored, deseeded and chopped
150g natural yoghurt (0% fat)
2 tbsp finely chopped coriander

For the katchumber salad:

1 small red onion, finely diced
2 large tomatoes, diced
1/3 cucumber (150g) diced
Juice of half a lime
1 tsp chaat masala

To serve:

Coriander leaves, roughly torn
320g basmati rice, cooked with salt and a pinch of saffron strands (optional)



  1. Place the chicken in a large bowl or other non-reactive dish and slash the chicken breasts. For the marinade, mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl. Spread the marinade all over the crown. Cover with cling film and place in the fridge to marinate overnight, or for a minimum of 4 hours.
  2. When you’re ready to cook the chicken, preheat the oven to fan 120C / gas ½. Place the marinated chicken in a roasting dish and spoon over any remaining marinade. Cook in the oven for 2 hours (it won’t be cooked right through at this stage).
  3. Meanwhile, make the curry sauce – heat the oil in a large saute pan. Toss in the onions and cook for 10 minutes, or until they are golden brown, adding a splash of water to the pan if they begin to stick. Add the garlic and ginger with a splash of water, stir well and cook for 1 minute. Add the spices with some salt and cook for another minute.
  4. Stir in the tomato puree and cook for a further minute, then tip in the tinned tomatoes and pour in the water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat to gently simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes. Add the chopped peppers and cook for a further 5 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat.
  5. Take the chicken out of the oven. Wave a cook’s blowtorch over the surface until the marinade has slightly blackened in places. Set aside to rest for 10 minutes.
  6. For the katchumber salad, mix everything together in a bowl and set aside (no need to chill).
  7. Take the chicken breasts off the bone and cut the meat into chunks, about 2.5cm. Reheat the curry sauce, then add the chicken and simmer for about 5 minutes, until the pieces are cooked through. Stir though the yoghurt and chopped coriander. Taste to check the seasoning.
  8. Serve scattered with coriander, with saffron rice, if you like, and the katchumber salad alongside.