Chicken Tikka Masala

Two weekends ago we helped our friends Steve and Emily build a garage. Well, to be more accurate, Will continued to help Steve in an on going project to build a garage.

Instead of helping build this time, I spent several hours looking over loan options with the help of the greatest father-in-law in the whole universe. While I’m excited to be going back to school, the prospect of taking out more loans is daunting. When I spoke on the phone to the loan officer and he asked me to confirm the amount of money, I said “Yes, that’s correct and now please don’t say the number again.” For the rest of the call, it was “that number you don’t want me to say.”

For those who may stumble across my blog and are planning to go back to school or about to start school the few things I’d advice are:

  1. Apply everywhere you want to go, even if you think you can’t get in, you may be surprised.
  2. Plan ahead, make lists, spreadsheets and do lots of research. Talk to students at the schools, professors and people with experience doing what you are about to do.
  3. Apply for every scholarship you can find and carefully analyze your loan options.
  4. Do not, give up.

After several hours at this depressing task (loan research, not garage building), I took a break for dinner. We had ordered Indian food and I love, love, love Indian Food. I realized, as I bit into my delicious samosa, that while my home cooked repertoire is quite diverse, it doesn’t include Indian food. Sure I cook curries, but they are of the Thai persuasion rather than Indian. I felt the need to remedy this appalling gap in my culinary endeavors and decided to try to make Bugs’ favorite, Chicken Tikka Masala.

I used a recipe from Pioneer Woman, posted by a friend of hers. It turned out delicious but not quite Chicken Tikka Masala. We had our friends over, one of whom, happens to work in an Indian Restaurant. She gave me some good suggestions to try when I make the dish again.

One tweak I already made is marinating the chicken in the yogurt and spices instead of cooking it right away. I wish I had done this for longer to give the chicken more flavor. My friend recomended marinating overnight. The sauce didn’t have that orange-red color or that same creamy flavor that I find in my favorite Indian restaurant. The rice turned out excellent, though not as evenly cooked as I would have like. Overall, it was a yummy dinner but it needs work. Now I just need to do all those dishes in the kitchen. :-/

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