Slow Cooker “Chicken Tikka Masala”

I’ve been tooling around with this recipe for awhile.  I wanted a healthy version of Chicken Tikka Masala, to put together in the slow cooker with all the depth and flavor of the traditional Chicken Tikka Masala.  No small feat, and this following recipe was only the result after a lot of trial and error.  Lots of error.   And I’ll be honest up front.  Although this is a “Slow Cooker” recipe, there is prep work, with an overnight marinade, and then some additional cooking steps required before putting it all into the “slow cooker” to finish it off.  The result is really awesome, but its not a “5 minute investment of your time”  meal.  There is a bit of planning involved here,  but worth the effort.  I will be working on trying to create a simple and quicker version of this recipe, but this was the best I could come up with so far that satisfied my palate. Additionally,  I added the extra step of quick “broiling” the chicken after the marinade, to add some extra depth of flavor to it before putting it in the slow cooker with the marinade.  You can skip this step if you like.

 

If you make this recipe an make any adjustments or changes, by all means let me know and I can post it in the comments section.  Thanks you guys!

Ingredients for Chicken and Marinade:

  • 2 cups non fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 to 2 inch peeled fresh grated ginger
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon red chili powder (adjust for your own personal likes on the “heat” factor”)
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons of either white or black pepper
  • 2 to 3 lbs of boneless, skinless chicken breasts quartered (you can use thighs as well, but I prefer breasts)

Directions for Marinade:

  • Combine all the ingredients together, then add chicken until all pieces are coated
  • Cover and let it marinade for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight.  I marinated this batch for 24 hours

Masala Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, ghee or neutral cooking oil.
  • 2 medium onions peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
  • 6 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 1 inch of ginger peeled and grated
  • 1/2 tsp of cumin
  • 1/2 tsp of coriander
  • 14.5 ounce can of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • Optional: 1/2 to 1 cup of organic cream or light coconut milk, and chopped cilantro to add in at the end

Directions for Masala and cooking chicken

  1. On stove take large sauce pan and saute the onions and garlic until soft over medium heat
  2. Add ginger and tomatoes, stir for aprox a minute
  3. Add cumin, coriander, garam masala and tomato paste and stir until heated through
  4. Add mixture to slow cooker
  5. (Optional: Broil Chicken without marinade at HIGH in oven until browned or brown over stove in skillet.  for the additional browning step, BE SURE to remove the marinade from the chicken first.)
  6. With slotted spoon or tongs, add the chicken to the slow cooker.  ***For a thinner base (my preference) add the remaining marinade, for thicker base, discard marinade.
  7. Cook on “high” for 6 to 8 hours or until chicken is cooked all the way through.  You can adjust the heat if the chicken looks like its become to cooked, and turn it down to “low” halfway in between.
  8. Add optional cream or coconut milk, and cilantro
  9. Serve and Enjoy

 

 

 

 

 



sig

Slow Cooker Indian Curried Chickpeas (Super Healthy!)

 

This is a super healthy, slow cooker version of curried chickpeas made from scratch with the dry beans. Curried chickpeas is one of my favorite snack foods on the planet!   I call this recipe “Indian Comfort Food”.   Cook up a big batch of this and then store in your fridge for a fast quick snack or meal on the go.  Tastes awesome  topped with chopped cilantro and red onions, or cooled with an organic Greek yogurt or healthy cashew cream.  Some people love these served as the main protein in a Middle Eastern wrap dish.

I have been on quite the Indian food kick lately.  That’s a good thing because Indian food has a flavor profile filled with lots of yummy  spices and aromatics which are packed with nutrition, cancer and disease fighting properties.   With a slow cooker you just take the dried beans or peas,  throw in the additional ingredients, set the heat and timer, and your done.  Couldn’t be easier!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups of dried chickpeas
  • 1 medium red or yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 tomato (optional) diced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 cloves of garlic peeled and minced
  • 3 green chilies (serrano, habanero, or cayenne) stems removed chopped
  • 1/2 tablespoon cumin seeds ground
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1/2 tablespoon red chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 6 cups of water
  • Optional:
  • a couple tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • low fat or non fat plain organic Greek yogurt or cashew cream
  • lime wedges for garnish

Directions:

  • Put the chickpeas, onion, tomato, ginger, garlic, green chilies, spices and water into the slow cooker (I use a 3 1/2 quart cooker, but you can use are larger one if you like)
  •  You have two cooking options: Cook on “High” for the first 6 hours, stir, and then on “Low”  until the beans are cooked to your desired tenderness.  Or you can cook it on “Low” for 12  hours or until the beans are to your desired tenderness.
  • To serve, add the chopped cilantro and stir in a little Greek Yogurt or stir in some cashew cream to give the beans an added delicious little creaminess.

Serve and enjoy!   Keep a container for easy snacking in the fridge. These are so yummy, I know you will love this recipe.

 

 

 

 



sig

Slow Cooker Thai Red Curry Chicken with Fresh Crunchy Veggies

The first time I made this, when checking out the finished product in the slow cooker towards the end, I noticed it definitely needed more color and “crunch”.  I added in some veggies that I cooked really quickly over the stove. I use organic chicken breasts, but chicken thighs work really well, and some people actually prefer them. I cut down the calories in this dish by using lower fat coconut milk. I used a slow cooker for this but you  can cook it for a long time  over gentle heat as well. But, keep in mind, the intense Thai flavors really infuse into the Shiitakes and the chicken when cooked in the slow cooker!

Ingredients:

  • 3 Tablespoons grape-seed oil
  • 1 to  1 1/2 lbs of chicken breasts or chicken thighs
  • 1 small jar of Thai Red Curry Paste
  • 1 cup of homemade chicken stock or store bought non fat chicken broth/stock
  • 8 ounces fresh Shiitake mushrooms (less expensive mushrooms are OK as well), stems trimmed and halved
  • 1 can sliced bamboo shoots, drained
  • 2 to 3 cups fresh cut up veggies (i.e. broccoli, snap peas, red and yellow peppers, red onion, etc.)
  • 1 Tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup basil leaves
  • optional steamed brown to serve it over, but I just eat it on its own

Directions:

  1. Cut chicken into thirds
  2. Heat 1 Tbsp of oil in frying pan over medium heat.
  3. Brown chicken in batches, for 1 to 2 minutes on each side or until golden.  Transfer to slow cooker.
  4. Reduce heat in frying pan to low.  Add 1 more Tablespoon oil to pan, add curry paste and cook, stirring for 1 to 2 minutes until aromatic.
  5. Add stock and stir until curry paste has dissolved.
  6. Add mushrooms and bamboo shoots.
  7. Pour mixture over chicken and stir to combine.
  8. Cover and cook on medium in slow cooker for 3 1/2 hours.
  9. At 3 1/2 hours: Combine fish sauce, brown sugar and coconut milk in a bowl and then stir into curry.  Reduce heat in slow cooker to low and set timer for 30 minutes.
  10. Heat remaining oil in large frying pan over medium high heat and add chopped fresh veggies and stir fry for a couple of minutes, to just cook through, yet still “al dente” and set aside
  11. At 4 hours: Add the fresh veggies to the slow cooker and mix thoroughly.
  12. Stir in the basil, and serve over rice or alone.  Enjoy!

    * Source:  Adapted from Super Food Ideas – August 2006, page 67



    sig

    Healthy Slow Cooker Indian Chicken Vindaloo

    I love Indian food! Indian food is one of my favorite types of food to eat now, but I really liked it when I was going through chemotherapy. The really powerful flavor profiles in some Indian foods, and the “heat”, helped to mask some of the annoying “chemo tastes” in my mouth while eating. My boyfriend used to hate Indian food and this is one of the dishes I used to convert him into a Indian food fan. Its so healthy because it utilizes a variety of spices which are enhanced by the added bonus that they not only really boost flavor, they come with multiple health benefits as well. This is such an easy recipe, high in nutrient density, chock full of spices with multiple health benefits, simply cooks in a crock pot over 5 to 6 hours, and will “wow” even the pickiest eater. This can also be cooked slowly over low heat on the stove in a dutch oven or large pot as well. It can be made with Chicken, Pork, Lamb or Veggies. The spices and “heat” can easily be adjusted to your own personal taste as well. I personally like my food really spicy and with a lot of heat, but the recipe below is the “mild” version.

    Ingredients:

    • 3 tbsps vinegar
    • 3 cloves garlic, minced (I use shallots because my boyfriend is allergic to garlic)
    • 1 1/2 tbsps of fresh ginger grated
    • 3/4 tbsps curry powder (mild)
    • 1 tbsp ground cumin
    • 1/4 tbsp ground cardamom
    • 1.4 tsp ground cloves
    • 1.4 tsp cayenne or hot pepper
    • 1 tbsp mustard seeds
    • 3 tbsps of olive oil
    • 1 1/2 tsps of ground cinnamon initially or 1 cinnamon stick added to the pot
    • 1 can of tomato paste with 2 equal cans filled of water
    • 1 small white or yellow onion chopped
    • 1 lb of skinless organic chicken breasts or thighs quartered or cubed
    • (Optional) 1/2 of a small cauliflower cut into bite size piece

    Directions:

    1. Puree the first 10 ingredients in a blender
    2. Pour puree, into the crock pot, add the tomato paste, water, cinnamon stick and stir
    3. In non stick skillet use 1 tablespoon olive oil and saute onions until soft, then brown chicken on all sides
    4. Add Chicken and Onions, (Cauliflower if using) to Crock Pot, stir and then cover
    5. Cook on low in a Crock Pot for 5 to 6 hours, or over the stove on medium low in a Dutch Oven or large pot
    6. Serve with Indian Saffron Brown Basmati Rice, with sauteed spinach, or by itself.
    7. Enjoy!

    Nutrition Facts

    • Servings per recipe: 3
    • Calories: aprox 300 calories, 100 calories from fat
    Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


    sig