Tikka masala is a traditional English dish at curry houses. Here I reimagine it as a modernist dish by turning the sauce into a gelled coating. It's a fun play on a old classic that many people really enjoy.
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Preheat the water bath to 60.5°C (141°F). If you don't have a sous vide machine, the chicken breasts can be grilled or pan seared.
Combine the spices in a small bowl and mix well. Salt and pepper the chicken breasts then coat with the spice mixture. Seal them in a sous vide bag and place into the water bath. Cook for 2 to 4 hours. Remove from the sous vide pouches and pat dry. Cut the chicken into bite-sized cubes.
Heat a pan over medium to medium-high heat. Add oil and warm. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and serrano pepper and cook for 2 minutes.
Add the tomato paste and garam masala and cook, stirring regularly, for 3 minutes. Add the crushed tomatoes, water, and honey then bring to a simmer for around 15 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste.
Add the agar, puree well, and bring to a boil for 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the heavy cream then reduce the heat to just below a simmer and keep it there while dipping the chicken.
Stick a toothpick in a chicken cube then dip the chicken into the tikka masala coating. Set the cube on a plate, the coating should begin to harden quickly. Once the coating has set, you can re-dip it if you want a thicker coating. Repeat for the remaining chicken.
The dipped chicken can be re-heated in an oven set below 80°C (175°F).
Place a coated chicken cube on a dish, sprinkle on some cilantro and serve.