Mushroom Tikka Masala Recipe
from Veggie Belly
- A possible substitute if you do not have access to kasoori methi is to use dried celery leaves with a pinch of ground fennel. You can leave this ingredient out of the dish if you don't have access to it or to a good substitute, however it adds a great depth of flavor and I highly recommend you get a box if it's within your reach.
tip: to cut down the cooking time, work on prepping and cooking the vegetables while waiting for each stage of the sauce to finish.
Mushroom cooking tipscourtesy of Good Eats "The Fungal Gourmet"
1. Cut the mushrooms so they are all the same size. I think it is easier to saute when mushrooms are cut thin and uniformly.
2. Use a heavy pan. A heavy pan heats evenly and stays hot. A sauté pan will provide the widest cooking surface since it is wide and has straight sides.
3. Use high heat.
4. Choose the right fat, one that can take heat and adds great flavor. You want a high "smoke point", which means the fat can get pretty hot before starting to smoke (once it reaches the smoking point, it goes rancid quickly and is no longer ideal for cooking). If you can get a fat that can maintain high heat you can get a better browning in your saute. You also want a fat which adds great flavor because mushrooms act like sponges. You could use olive oil; coconut oil has a higher smoke point but the best is clarified butter (ghee). Butter adds rich flavor and because it's clarified it has a higher smoke point.
Successful sauteing means not over crowding the pan. Every mushroom needs to have full contact with the pan. The high heat will cause water that seeps out of the mushrooms to evaporate immediately (causing the sizzling sound of the saute). With the moisture disappearing immediately, they food will quickly brown and build a crust which seals in flavor. Keep it hot and let there be plenty of room.
Mushroom Tikka Masala Recipe from Veggie BellyServes 4Time: 1 hour, 40 minutes
Sala from Veggie Belly wrote the original recipe for a guest post on Rasa Malaysia. I have added three adaptations of my own. One from the Good Eats episode “The Fungal Gourmet” where I separately sautéed the mushrooms in gee and added them to the sauce. I also separately sautéed the bell peppers in olive oil because Hubby prefers fried bell peppers as they don’t get slimy. And the last change I made was using my favorite yogurt based sauce technique from my chole recipe.Equipment3 sauté pans (any cooking pans will do, but sauté pans are the most efficient)
For the sauce3 tablespoons vegetable oil2 teaspoons cumin seeds2 large onion, minced1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste1 tablespoon garlic and ginger paste6 medium sized ripe tomatoes, pureed1/2 cup - 1 cup whole Greek yogurt or strained yogurt (amount based on personal preference)* I prefer Mountain High Whole Plain Yogurt for its thickness1 teaspoon coriander powder1 teaspoon cumin powder1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder1/2 teaspoon chili powder or according to taste1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder (found at Indian grocery stores. I've also seen it at Whole Foods)4 tablespoons dry kasoori methi (found at Indian Store)4 tablespoons heavy cream, optionalFor the vegetables16 oz fresh white button mushrooms (about 25 mushrooms, or two packages)Ghee (clarified butter) for sautéing (although clarified butter gives the best flavor, you can substitute it with any cooking oil that can take high heat; coconut oil or vegetable oil are good substitutes)1 large green bell pepper, cubed1 large red bell pepper, cubed2 tablespoon oilChopped cilantro, to taste
MethodFor the sauce:Heat oil in a large saute pan. When the oil ripples on the surface add the cumin seeds. Once they begin to sizzle add the onions and the salt. Cook on medium heat till onions turn brown. Then add the garlic and ginger paste and stir for about a minute or two until the smell of the raw paste disappears. Pour in the tomato puree and let it cook till the oil separates from the tomato sauce and the tomato sauce thickens a bit, about 5-8 minutes. Meanwhile mix the coriander, cumin, turmeric and chili powders into the yogurt. Add the yogurt to the saucepan once the tomatoes are done and stir consistently for 3 minutes.
For the vegetables:While the sauce is cooking, work on the mushrooms. Some button mushrooms come in pre-washed packages but you can wipe the mushrooms clean with a paper towel or brush them off if you wish. You can also rinse them in a colander or submerged in water in the sink if you can plug your drain. Slice the mushrooms into thirds or in half, depending on your preference.Put another sauté pan on medium high heat and ladle on a tablespoon of ghee (clarified butter) or your preferred sautéing oil. Keep the oil pretty hot but not to the smoking point. Drop in a handful of mushrooms. Make sure all the mushrooms are touching the hot pan so be careful not to overcrowd the pan. The mushrooms will sizzle and brown on one side, this will take 2-3 minutes. Once they are golden brown and have a bit of a crust on them from the sauté, flip each and every mushroom piece over and sauté the other side. Once that handful of mushrooms are beautifully golden and crusty, move them out to the sides of the pan where the heat is less and add another handful. You can also just spoon out the finished mushrooms and drop them into the sauce but only if your sauce is finished. Continue until all the mushrooms are cooked.While your mushrooms are sautéing, start preparing the bell peppers. Heat another sauté pan on medium-high heat. Once it is hot (but not smoking), add the olive oil (you can substitute it with another high-heat cooking oil if you wish). Dice the bell peppers into bite-sized cubes and add them to the oil. Stir the bell peppers occasionally until they fry evenly (about 8-10 minutes).
The Finishing Touches:Once all your mushrooms and bell peppers are finished, add them to your sauce. Crumble and crinkle the kasoori methi over the sauce by placing it in the palm of your hand and then rolling and crushing the leaves between your palms, letting the powdered leaves fall into the sauce. Cook on medium heat for about 3 minutes. Sprinkle on the garam masala and mix well, let it cook for a minute. Be sure to taste test and adjust the spices if necessary. Turn off heat and stir in heavy cream if you choose to use it. Garnish with chopped cilantro.