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Turkey tikka masala

Turkey tikka masala

Serves 4   Takes 40-45 minutes

Turkey’s not just for Christmas – it’s a healthy all-year round option and this curry with a kick of heat is a great way to use up leftover cooked turkey meat


  • 500g cooked turkey meat, cut into chunks
  • 200g thick natural yoghurt
  • 1 green chilli, chopped
  • Juice of 1 lime, plus extra wedges to serve
  • 2 tbsp tikka masala paste
  • Sea salt flakes
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 50g butter
  • 5 green cardamom pods
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 onions, peeled and chopped
  • 2cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 4 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 125ml single cream
  • 200ml water
  • 1 tsp fenugreek leaves, crushed in a pestle and mortar (optional)
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp sugar

To serve

  • A small bunch of coriander, chopped
  • Naan bread
  • Steamed rice
  • Greek yoghurt


1. Put the turkey into a large bowl with the yoghurt, chilli, lime juice, tikka masala paste, some salt, pepper and 1 tbsp of vegetable oil, tossing well to coat. Set aside for at least 30 minutes in the fridge.

2. Meanwhile, make the curry sauce. Heat the remaining oil and butter in a deep frying pan, then add the cardamom and cinnamon and cook for 20 seconds until you can start to smell the spices. Add the onions with a pinch of salt and cook for 6-8 minutes until they start to colour. Add the ginger, garlic, cumin, coriander, turmeric, chopped tomatoes and tomato puree and stir well. Simmer for 15 minutes until the oil starts to separate from the sauce. Use a stick blender to puree until smooth or leave a little chunky if you like.

3. Heat the grill to high. Transfer the meat from the marinade to a baking tray lined with foil, reserving the marinade.

4. Grill the marinated cooked turkey for 5 minutes on each side until heated through and the marinade is charring in places.

5. Slowly stir the reserved marinade mixture into the curry sauce, along with the cream and water. Add the fenugreek (if using), garam masala and sugar. Simmer for 5 minutes, then stir in the grilled turkey. Taste and season, adding salt, sugar or lime juice as needed. 

6. Serve sprinkled with some chopped coriander, plus extra lime wedges, naan bread, steamed rice and Greek yoghurt.

Recipe created by Rachel Green (

Photograph © Michael Powell 

For more turkey recipe inspiration, visit

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