Easy, well-loved curry recipe

I don’t often do recipes on this blog but this curry is such a hit with our fussy eaters and our friends that as we were having it tonight I thought I really should blog about it. I won’t claim it as my own. It comes originally from the Cook Yourself Thin cookbook, so is pretty healthy but absolutely yummy. Now, this is no place for a curry purist, this isn’t proper homemade curry, but it is about as homemade as this busy mum gets when it comes to curry (and even busy dad is trained to make it).

I’ll give you the original recipe then tell you my modifications.

Chicken Tikka Masala

Serves 2

For the marinade:

1 tablespoon tikka masala curry paste (Patak’s is the best we’ve tried)

150g of 0% fat natural yoghurt

2 diced chicken breasts


For the sauce:

1 rounded tablespoon tikka masala curry paste

1 onion finely chopped

200g passatta

200ml tin light coconut milk

1 tablespoon 0% fat natural yoghurt

handful chopped corriander

To make the marinade, mix curry paste, yogurt, chicken and salt together, cover and leave to marinade ideally overnight

Preheat oven to 220C/fan200C. Wipe marinade off chicken and place on a baking tray. Bake for 10 mins.

Meanwhile make the sauce by heating the curry paste in a saucepan. Add the onion and sweat slowly for 5-8 mins. Add passatta and coconut milk and bring to the boil. Turn down heat and add chicken. Cook over a low heat for 5 mins or until chicken cooked through. Finish by stirring through yoghurt and coriander.

Now, here’s what I do: almost never actually measure any of these ingredients. I’m fairly liberal with the curry sauce and just adjust to how much we have left. This recipe says it serves two, but all that passatta and coconut milk make for a very runny curry. We just add more meat and we can make it serve 2 adults and a 5 and 2 year old for two nights. Also we rarely use chicken breasts, we often use leftover roast chicken, in which case we might marinade in curry paste (if we remember) but don’t cook in the oven. just straight into the sauce. I’ve never added salt and can’t remember ever reading the instruction to wipe off the marinade so I’ve never done that!

When I can get away with it I add grated carrot and courgette in with the onion (carrots work best as they blend in with the sauce, or potatoes (it doesn’t keep so well over two days with potatoes as they go mushy, and I pre cook them if I do add them for a quicker meal). I have also never added coriander as I never have any, and to be honest any greenery makes Betty suspicious. I tend to add yoghurt on the plate rather than during cooking, but to be honest you could omit yoghurt from the whole recipe and it would still taste great.

Both our baby led weaned kids had this as soon as they could eat, mixed with rice (to thicken and make it easier to pick up) and with yoghurt to cool, both temperature and spice wise (though this isn’t a hot curry).

Everyone we feed this to loves it, and one friend who we loaned the cook book to has made it a staple of her household and evangelised to her friends too. I also shared it with a Twitter friend who’s family also loved it. Like I said, this isn’t for the curry connoisseur, but it is great easy, healthy dish, for a busy family, and even fussy kids.

Christmas Leftover Tiffin


Every year, usually before New Years Day, make a tiffin out of all the Christmas leftover chocolate and biscuits. Often known as refrigerator cake, tiffin is essentially biscuit and chocolate.

What I do is find all the leftover selection biscuits (the dark ones no one likes) and any other biscuits laying around, and crush them all with a rolling pin (there’s no rules but I like mine quite fine).

Then gather all the left over chocolate, even the chocolate coins and Christmas tree decs, the Celebrations no one wants (Milky Way). It does need a healthy dose of dark chocolate so it’s not too sweet. Add a bit of butter and golden syrup so it’s not too hard when chilled, and melt the lot in a bowl over a pan of hot water.

Mix together. Add raisins (to make it feel healthy) or nuts (I wouldn’t. In my opinion nuts ruin a cake or chocolate) or anything else you have leftover. There are no rules about quantities but you at least want the chocolate mixture to completely coat the crushed biscuits. Press firmly into a lined dish and stick in the fridge for a couple of hours. Make sure you keep it in the fridge if you don’t polish is off in one sitting.

There really are no hard and fast rules. It’s just biscuits, butter, sugar and chocolate; it’s pretty much going to taste good whatever! With this batch I used a box of leftover mint chocolate creams. I also added a layer of chocolate on the top. The result is delicious.

Somehow eating all that leftover food in compressed cake form doesn’t seem as bad as eating the chocolates and biscuits individually…

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love made for me…a reindeer cake for my tea!

Rudolf the red-nosed reindeer had a very multi-coloured nose...

I’ve been super mummy today (well, I kinda ruined it by shouting myself hoarse at bedtime, but that is another story…). Spent a small fortune in Sainsbury’s for school stuff, a couple of tombola items, ingredients for cakes for the school fair tomorrow, some spare knickers to donate (got a a desperate text asking for spares, and it is probably Betty using most of them anyway), ingredients for Christmas fudge to give to teachers for Christmas.

I had this great idea that Betty’s friend would come over for tea and we would make reindeer cakes which I spotted on the Mum of All Trades blog. I would win brownie points on multiple fronts: crafty activity with Betty; looking after a friend’s child; equipping said child cakes for the school fair tomorrow, therefore absolving her of that responsibility; and donating scores of beautiful homemade cakes to the school fair.

Earlier in the week I got a text from said friend “he wants to make Spiderman cakes – what shall I tell him?” “Fine” I said, after all they are his cakes to take. Well, if he wanted to make Spiderman cakes, Betty would to. I thought we’d make both Spiderman and reindeer cakes.


Urggh, absolutely exhausting trying to supervise two four-year olds to make sell-able, well, edible, cakes. Even more exhausting trying to stop them eating chocolate buttons and Smarties (four tubes to get about 10 bloody red ones! So, not all of them have red noses I’m afraid).

Chaos of my kitchen

The chocolate ones are sadly a little dry as I didn’t compensate for the cocoa powder. Oh well, if people don’t like them I’ll blame the kids! I’ll have to buy them all back from the cake stall!

Spidercake, spidercake, does whatever a spidercake does!