Chicken tikka masala is a rich dish that can be difficult to pair with the right dessert. The traditional Indian dish consists of spicy chicken in a curry and tomato cream sauce. The dish has a complex flavor, and following it up with a complex dessert can overwhelm your taste buds. The best desserts for the dish are those with relatively simple flavors that soothe your taste buds instead of overpowering them.
Pudding is a classic treat that helps melt away the spiciness of any dish. Serve vanilla, almond or banana pudding for a simple after-dinner treat. Mix tapioca pudding with finely chopped raisins and almonds to create a dessert with a light, yet sophisticated, flavor. Combine rice pudding with toasted coconut flakes and chopped macadamia nuts for a nutty sweet with a mellow taste. Stir crushed vanilla beans and ground ginger into rice pudding to make a mildly zesty treat.
Smooth Frozen Treats
Ice cream and sorbet are both appropriate finishing touches for a chicken tikka masala meal served on a hot summer night. Dole out vanilla bean or butter pecan ice cream for an effortless chilled dessert with a mellow taste. Top French vanilla ice cream with a light rum sauce for an extra-creamy treat with a hint of rich flavor. Sprinkle caramel ice cream with caramelized banana slices to make an extra-sweet dessert. Serve lemon, lime or orange sorbet for a creamy treat with a citrusy bite. Drizzle papaya sorbet with pineapple sauce to create a tropical style sweet.
Fabulous Fruit Bites
Fresh or dried, fruit-based desserts are a naturally sweet way to end a rich meal. Sprinkle pineapple spears with lime juice for a refreshing treat with a tangy taste. Toss mango and orange slices together to make a juicy dessert salad that’s low in fat. Stuff dried apricots with chopped walnuts and cream cheese to create a quick gourmet dessert with a light flavor. Drizzle dried figs with lemon juice and honey for a chewy sweet with an earthy taste.
Pies are not the most common choice when it comes to desserts for chicken tikka masala, but the right kind pairs surprisingly well with the dish. Slice up coconut, lemon or banana cream pie for a silky dessert with a simple flavor. Lightly sprinkle a raisin pie with ground cinnamon to make a classic treat that echoes the spiciness of the chicken recipe without actually tasting spicy.
A tasty cookie is a light, yet satisfying, way to end a chicken tikka masala dinner. Garnish cashew butter cookies with roasted cashews for a sweet and salty dessert. Combine vanilla sugar cookies with toasted coconut flakes to create a basic treat with a hint of nutty flavor. Drizzle lemon thumbprint cookies with honey for an old-fashioned dessert with a little zip.
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A writer since 2000, Aya Pauli has covered a variety of topics including food, fashion, beauty, health, parenting, education, decor and crafts. Her award-winning recipes have been published in food magazines such as "Taste of Home," and she is also the author of a salad cookbook. Pauli's craft projects appear in major manufacturer websites, including Dow Styrofoam. She also holds a CDA in early childhood education and works as a preschool teacher in Wyoming.