Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken Tikka

People are always asking us for a Tikka Masala blend but the thing is it takes more than just one blend to make that delicious dish ~ for true perfection you need Curry and Garam Masala and some extra chili flakes and some fresh ginger and cilantro.

We’ve made this a few times now and it’s always tasty. We started with this recipe from Bon Appétit, we’ve made a few tweaks, and now we think it’s pretty close to perfect. The real secret is grilling the chicken after you marinate it ~ yup, maybe that seems like a big extra step but it is soooo worth it.

Here’s the recipe:

For marinade

2 chicken breast

1 cup yogurt

2 teaspoons Garam Masala

2 teaspoons Curry

2 teaspoons fresh ginger, finely minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 teaspoons Durango Salt

For sauce

3 tablespoons oil, butter, or ghee

1 medium onion thinly sliced

1/3 cups tomato paste

1 teaspoon red chili flakes

2 tablespoons Garam Masala

1 tablespoon Curry

1 14oz can diced tomatoes

2 cups heavy cream

fresh cilantro, chopped

First make your marinade. Combine all the ingredients in a zip top bag, throw in your chicken breasts and chill in the fridge for at least four to six hours.

Now make the sauce. Heat your oil over medium heat in a large heavy pot. Add the onion, tomato paste, red chili flakes, Curry, and Garam Masala. Cook, stirring often until the tomato paste darkens and the bottom of your pan begins to brown. Add the diced tomatoes with all their juices, crushing them a bit more with your hands as you add them. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer. Stir often and scrape the brown bits off the bottom of the pan. Cook until sauce thickens ~ about 8-10 minutes. Add the cream and cilantro, simmer until the sauce thickens again, 30 to 40 minutes.

During this last thickening phase you can go ahead and cook your chicken. The most scrumptious option is to throw that chicken on the grill and cook it till it’s got a nice char going on and is cooked through. Cut the breasts into small bite-sized chunks and throw them into your sauce.

If grilling is not your cup-o-tea, the original recipe tells you to chop the chicken into bite-sized pieces before you marinate it. Then line a pan with foil and throw the chicken bits under the broiler in your oven for about 10 minutes or until it begins to blacken then throw it into the sauce and simmer for another 10 minutes until the chicken is completely cooked. Both of these options are excellent, yet we have found after much trial and error that we preferred the certain je ne sais quoi that the grill added to the dish but in a pinch the broiler worked just fine.

Serve with rice and naan and any other goodies you want to throw together.


Charleston Spice Co.

Ghost Reaper Buttercream Frosting

Ghost Reaper Buttercream Frostin

This buttercream frosting is worthy of day dreams and midnight sighs.

It’s got a haunting heat that will linger on your tongue even after you’ve taken your last bite.  This subtle kick in the pants leaves you craving just one more chance to indulge in the sweet sultry warmth of fire and butter.


This recipe will decently coat 12 cupcakes:

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temp

1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar

2 tablespoons heavy cream

1/2 teaspoon Ghost Reaper Sugar*

In a small microwave safe bowl combine heavy cream and Ghost Reaper Sugar. Zap it in the microwave for about 15 sec, maybe 20 if you feel ballsy. Stir that up, making sure the sugar dissolves. If you’d like, you can do this same thing in a small saucepan on the stove. Let this mixture cool.

In a stand mixer beat the butter on medium until it is smooth. Turn the speed to low and add your powdered sugar. Increase the speed to medium again and blend until the mixture comes together. Add the heavy cream and mix until completely combined.

Slather liberally onto your favorite cupcakes or go big and throw this on a cake. Give to friends without telling them OR let them know that if they find a little red spot in the frosting its a hot pepper flake, not a stray sprinkle.

Stay sweet,


Charleston Spice Co.

Ghost Reaper Buttercream Frosting

*1/2 a teaspoon of this sugar will give the frosting a moderate level of heat that will be enjoyable to everyone (of course, if you get a flake it might be alarmingly less enjoyable). HOWEVER you know what your heat tolerance is and you might want to add a bit more ~ it’s on you, don’t come crying to me if it’s too hot ~ Ghost Peppers & Carolina Reapers are hot. There. I said it. Don’t be dumb, and don’t waste a whole stick of butter.


Forever and always,

Charleston Spice Co.