Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala & Chilled Strawberry Soup: SRC September

This month, for my Secret Recipe Club assignment… I ended up making two of her recipes!  There were just so many to choose from, I couldn’t decide on one.

For those of you who are new to this or just not paying attention- the Secret Recipe Club is a really cool group I joined last winter.  Every month, we are assigned a new blogger.  This month, I was paired up with Lisa from “Cook Lisa Cook“.  We get to pick ANY recipe that blogger has written about and cook it up ourselves.  We can make adjustments according to our tastes too.  All of the bloggers post their results on the same day and we all get to see who had who and more importantly, what delicious dishes were made!

I decided to make Lisa’s Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala and serve the spicy dish with a side of her Strawberry Soup.  Using the slow cooker isn’t something i typically do in the summer, but it worked out to be a lifesaver!  I got it all ready and let it cook during the day, and by the time that Dave was home from work and I was home from a late appointment… dinner was READY for us, no more work for me!  Love this concept 🙂

Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1.5 TBS. fresh grated ginger
  • 1 – 29 oz. can tomato puree
  • 3/4 cup Fat Free Plain Greek yogurt 
  • 1 TBS. olive oil 
  • 1 TBS. Garam masala 
  • 1/2 TBS. cumin 
  • 1/2 TBS. paprika 
  • 1 tsp. sea salt, or to taste
  • 2, 3-inch pieces whole cinnamon sticks 
  • 1 tsp. fresh ground black pepper 
  • 1 TBS. cayenne pepper, more or less depending on your heat preference
  • 2 bay leaves 
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream (or use light cream)
  • 1/2 TBS. cornstarch 
  • cilantro, for topping

Directions:

1.  Place everything up to and including the bay leaves into the slow cooker.  Stir to combine everything and make sure the chicken is coated well.  Refrigerate overnight or use immediately.  When ready to cook, place the crock into the slow cooker, cover and cook for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high.

2.  When done, in a medium bowl, whisk together the heavy cream and corn starch, then pour the mixture into the crockpot and gently stir. Let cook an additional 20 minutes to thicken up.

3.  Serve hot over a bed of rice and garnish with cilantro.

Recipe adapted from Cook Lisa Cook

 

Want more Slow Cooker Recipes?  Check these out!

Do you just love spicy food?  Here are more spicy recipes!

 

Chilled Strawberry Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1lb Frozen Strawberries (no sugar added)
  • 1/2 cup Heavy Cream
  • 1/2 cup Skim Milk
  • 1 heaping Tablespoon Fat Free Sour Cream
  • 1 Heaping Tablespoon Fat Free Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • Mint or Fresh Strawberries for Garnish

Directions:

1.  Mix everything except the garnish in a blender until smooth.  I had to stir it around a few times to help it get going and add a little bit of skim milk to make it a little less thick.  Using a blender mix together the strawberries, heavy cream, sour cream & yogurt until smooth.

2.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.  Stir or shake will before serving.  Add a dollop of sour cream, fresh strawberries, and mint leaves for garnish.

Recipe from:  Cook Lisa Cook

Everything ready to hang all day in the crock!

Everything ready to hang all day in the crock!

Ready to eat!  Had to add a little extra black pepper :)

Ready to eat! Had to add a little extra black pepper 🙂

Pretty strawberry soup!

Pretty strawberry soup!

The perfect dinner!

The perfect dinner!

The Strawberry Soup was the perfect complement to the spicy chicken dish.  I would even love to add a drizzle of balsamic vinegar or a balsamic reduction to add more depth of flavor next time.  The Chicken Tikka Masala itself had so many complex flavors with the curry, the cinnamon and of course the garam masala.  I was super excited to use the garam masala… I’ve had it for a few months and never had a chance to use it!  This was the perfect amount of creamy and spicy for us.  MMM!

Okay everyone, now time to check out the other amazing recipes revealed today! ENJOY!

SBS Salad

“It’s a salad… only bigger… with lots of stuff in it”… Elaine Benes said it right when she made the “Big Salad” a hit back in the ’90’s.  In my house, “big salad” night is always quite the production.  Everyone is in the kitchen, rinsing, chopping, and even sometimes cooking to prepare their own version of the big salad.  You can always find bacon in my Dad’s, onion in my Mom’s, and blue cheese in mine.  We all have our favorites and this dinner is an easy one to personalize.  

If you didn’t catch these before, check out two of my favorite salads:  The Fajita Salad & the Mish-Mosh Salad.  We had just gone food shopping this week so our fresh ingredients were plentiful and this salad turned out beautiful!  I love when I manage to get so many colors in one bowl.  

I call this one (oh, and naming them for the blog makes the entire process so much more fun) the SBS Salad and boy was it delicious!!

SBS Salad (Strawberry, Blue, & Shrimp)

Recipe by:  It’s Good to be the Cook
Ingredients:
2 Cups Romaine, chopped
5 Shrimp, cooked, chilled, chopped
2 Tablespoons Blue Cheese Crumbles
3 Strawberries, washed & sliced
1/2 Carrot, shaved with a vegetable peeler
2 Tablespoons Purple Cabbage, sliced
1 Hot Cherry Pepper, seeded & sliced
1 Tablespoon Sliced & Roasted Almonds
5 Yellow Grape Tomatoes, sliced in half
5 Fat Free Croutons
2 Tablespoons Ken’s Light Asian Sesame (my FAV dressing)

I’m pretty sure that this salad is better than Elaine’s at Monk’s!  YUM!  

What’s your favorite “big salad” topping?  

Kiwi-Strawberry & Mango Smoothie

After a nice long walk/run outside today, I needed something refreshing.  I whipped up this smoothie and OMG was it amazing!  Mom and I bought a giant container of Fat Free Vanilla Greek Yogurt to make smoothies.  I put the yogurt and fruit into our blender… not even checking to see if we had milk!  I was so disappointed, thinking I wasn’t going to be able to make my smoothie… and the only juice we had in the fridge was Ruby Grapefruit.  Although I thought it would ruin it, I had to give it a shot.

 

It was SO delish!  The grapefruit juice gave the smoothie a little bit of a sour taste at times which I loved!  The fruits went so well together too.  I can’t wait to make more… this is going to be a new obsession 🙂

 

KiwiStrawberry & Mango Smoothie

Recipe by:  It’s Good to be the Cook
Ingredients:
1/2 Cup Fat Free Vanilla Greek Yogurt
1/2 Cup Frozen Strawberries
1/2 Cup Frozen Mango
1 Small Banana
1 Kiwi, peeled
2 Tablespoons Ruby Grapefruit Juice
1 teaspoon Wheat Germ
Directions:
1.  Put everything in a blender
2.  Blend!!  I blended mine for 1-2 minutes.  You might have to stop it and stir once or twice if the frozen fruit gets stuck!