Happy Birthday to My Sister! Chicken Tikka Masala and Aloo Gobi Matar Remixed


Happy Birthday to my sister! I hope you have a good time today! You deserve it! If only I can send you some of this food! A fun memory I have of my sister while we were kids was when we had some visitors over and a lady asked my sister, she was then a 3 year old, “What is your favorite food?” My sister responded enthusiastically, “Chicken and mashed potatoes!” However, the lady’s daughter, about the same age said “Malunggay!” I can’t believe I still remember this, it makes me laugh thinking about that time. So, for her birthday, I made chicken and mashed potatoes, inspired by Indian cuisine. She loves Indian food and even traveled to Southeast Asia for a mission trip last year as a nursing student. We are really proud of her achievements and desire to help people. In addition to serving many people, I think she developed a taste for foods with spices. So for her birthday, here is an Indian fusion dish:  Crispy potato chip chicken tikka masala with aloo gobi mash.


This is a very vibrant dish, both in looks and in taste. Chicken and mashed potatoes are such a great combination. With some spices added in, it can become an irresistible combination. This recipe definitely was!


Let’s start with the chicken. I used some drumsticks from Trader Joe’s which are very tasty, probably because they were organic and free-range chickens. The method that I use is a bit different in that I use 2 steps of marinating:  first marinade/brine then poach and then a second marinade before roasting. Whenever I make drumsticks, either fried or roasted, I always marinate for an hour or so and poach it in the marinade/brine before breading then frying or roasting.

I learned this tip from my grandmother, Inang. She makes the best Filipino-style fried chicken, juicy, full of flavor, and crunch. I think that’s the secret to really good wings or drumsticks is to marinate, poach, then finish cooking in the oven, frying in a pan, or grill. Alton Brown does something similar and cooks chicken wings before crisping it with his really delicious wing recipe. For this spicy chicken recipe, I marinated it in a mixture of chicken stock, juice of 1 or 2 lemons, juice of 1 or 2 limes, and salt (or fish sauce!) & pepper to taste. Then I poached it in the marinade/brine for about 30 minutes.


If you have extra time before poaching, you can also do an overnight dry rub using Tikka BBQ seasoning or the seasoning mix that I used in the second marinade. This will bump up the flavor. I usually do this with ribs.


If you want, you can use good spice packages instead of or in addition to the spices that I use in the recipe.


After the chicken has poached and cooled, it get’s a second marinade with yogurt and spices. Let it marinate for an hour or two while getting your sides ready.


Speaking of sides, here is the aloo gobi in the process of cooking.


Then here it is now done!


Back to the chicken. After the second marinate, it’s time to bread them. With potato chips! I crushed up this “reduced guilt” potato chips from Trader Joe’s. I also added some tikka spices into the potato chip breading, but that’s optional.


The yogurt marinade acts like a glue for the breading, so you don’t need the flour and egg layers. You place the breaded drumsticks on a greased wire rack over a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake until golden brown! I like the wire rack method because the hot air circulates more evenly throughout the surface of the chicken so that it results in even browning. Also, because the potato chips have some oil in them, you don’t need to oil the surface of the breaded chicken. It will brown nicely without adding more oil directly on top.


While baking, you can make the tikka masala sauce. I gained confidence in making this sauce after my friend Suraj suggested that I make butter chicken, which is very similar to chicken tikka masala. I’ve made butter chicken several times before, so I am not too much of a newbie. So now it’s time to tinker and make some fusion recipes!


Meanwhile….MMMmmmmm…crispy spicy baked chicken!


To make the aloo gobi mash, I combined it with some mashed cauliflower and mashed potatoes (I kept the skins on).


Here is the potato-cauliflower mash. Yum! Mix it with the cooked aloo gobi.


After mixing the two, here’s what you get, a velvety and spicy aloo gobi mash. I love the flavor and texture of this mash. The spice is not as assertive when combined with the mashed potato and cauliflower, so add more if you wish. So good! Even by itself! Try not to keep stuffing your face with this before you finish cooking the whole meal, though! LOL.


I also made a shirataki noodle pancit with leeks and a garlic-white wine butter sauce. Can’t forget pancit for a birthday!
ChickenTikkaAlooGobiRemix3Did you know that chicken tikka masala is a favored dish in Britain? It is argued that the dish is influenced by British cuisine. I like some elements from Gordon Ramsay’s recipe, such as the use of  brown sugar, curry leaves, and tomato puree for a nice color and a bit of sweetness. I’ve used those elements in my recipe and I think it’s a winner! Lovely!

Crispy & Spicy Potato Chip Baked Chicken Tikka Masala

serves 3-4


Crispy Chicken

  • ~ 2 quarts chicken stock (or vegetable stock)
  • 1-2 lemons
  • 1-2 limes
  • fish sauce (optional)
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • pinch of turmeric
  • chili powder, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • pinch of fenugreek leaves (methi), crushed with fingers
  • 1/4 cup lime juice (or lemon)
  • 2 cups potato chip crumbs

Sauce (adapted from Gordon Ramsay)

  • Dash of cooking oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 green chillies, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • chili powder to taste
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar or brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 10 dried curry leaves
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • Garnish:  cilantro, chopped
  1. Marinate/brine the chicken:  Place the chicken stock in a large container and juice the lemons and limes in the stock. Add the peels to the mixture for more flavor. Season with salt & pepper and fish sauce to taste. Add the drumsticks and marinate for 1-2 hours.
  2. Poach the chicken in the brine for 30 minutes. Let cool and pat the chicken dry with a towel or paper towel.
  3. In a bowl, mix together the yogurt, turmeric, chili powder, coriander powder, ginger-garlic paste, crushed methi leaves, lime juice and salt to taste. Place in zip-top bag (or large container for marinating) and mix in the chicken drumsticks. Let marinate for 1-2 hours.
  4. Make the sauce:  Heat a pan on medium heat and add oil. Saute the cumin seeds until they start to crackle. Add the onion, ginger-garlic paste, and salt to taste. Saute until onion is softened.  Add the green chili, garam masala and turmeric and saute for a minute. Then add a couple tablespoons of water,  cumin powder, coriander powder, and chili powder. Saute for a minute then add the sugar, tomato paste, and tomato. Cook for a few more minutes until tomatoes have softened. Place the sauce in a blender of food processor and puree (careful! it’s hot!).
  5. Place sauce back into pan with the curry leaves. Simmer for a few minutes and then swirl in the yogurt. Set aside.
  6. Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a wire rack and place over a parchment-lined baking sheet. Take the yogurt marinated drumsticks and cover with crushed potato chips. Place on wire rack and bake for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with the sauce and garnish with cilantro. Enjoy!

Aloo Gobi Matar Mash

Serves ~6


  • Dash of cooking oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
  • pinch of hing (asafoetida)
  • 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2-4 green chillies, sliced
  • 3 tomatoes, diced
  • 3/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon amchoor (dried mango) powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 1-2 cups cauliflower florets
  • 1-2 cups potato, diced (can leave skin on)
  • salt, to taste
  • 3/4-1 cup green peas (matar), frozen is fine (optional)
  • 1/2 recipe mashed potato (recipe from Serious Eats) or use your favorite recipe that serves about 4
  • 1/2 a head of cauliflower, steamed and mashed
  • cilantro, chopped
  1. Heat a pan on medium and add oil. Saute cumin seeds and hing for a few seconds until cumin seeds crackle. Add the ginger garlic paste, onion, green chilies and saute for a few minutes. Add tomatoes and turmeric and cook for a few more minutes.
  2. In a small bowl mix together the amchoor powder, garam masala, and chili powder with 3 tablespoons of water. Add this spice paste to the pan and saute until oil oozes out of the mixture. Add the potatoes, cauliflower, 2-4 tablespoons of water, and salt.
  3. Cover the pan and cook for about 15 minutes or until vegetable are tender. Add the green peas and cook until soft.
  4. Mix together the cooked aloo gobi matar mixture, mashed potatoes and cauliflower. Adjust for salt & pepper if necessary. Garnish with cilantro. Done!


Melusine is a nickname for my sister. We both were volunteering at a local library and I saw a book called Melusine, and I just started calling her that. LOL. I hope she enjoys this post and the chicken & mashed potatoes (+pancit)!

 Happy Birthday Melusine!

22 thoughts on “Happy Birthday to My Sister! Chicken Tikka Masala and Aloo Gobi Matar Remixed

  1. such a great plate of food! I love tikka masala, and yes I’ve heard people calling it Britain’s national dish 🙂 using potato chips for breading is genius! Happy birthday to your sister 😉

    • Aww thanks. I got the seasonings at myspicesage.com. I believe that it’s free shipping right now. Lots of great spices on the site. I’ve been using it for about a year now, and they have good quality spices.

  2. Pingback: David’s Pancit with Bacon, Salmon, Vegetables and more Seafood | food flavor fascination

    • Some days I’m in the mood for mild spices. My husband can’t have any spice either, so I make a non-spiced version for him. I don’t mind that little extra time in the kitchen though. The crushed potato chips were a fun variation for the breading. 😀

      • I know! It’s cool! Reminds me of what my brothers did when we were kids. They used to pad their burges with potato chips for the added crunch. I used to cringe until I tried it. Loved it!

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