Discover ways to make hen tikka masala, with this award-winning recipe from Kahn

Initially from the southern Indian state of Kerala, Father George Kochuparampil, also referred to as Father Johnson, a reputation bestowed upon him by his mom underneath President Lyndon Johnson, grew up in a religious Catholic house. “My household has been Catholic for a very long time,” he mentioned. “I used to be an altar-bearer in my parish, and on the age of fifteen I attended a seminary in India and belonged to the Oblates of St.

Now on the employees of Holy Trinity Parish in Tremont, Pennsylvania, Father Johnson led a robust priestly journey throughout his Catholic life. Whereas he could also be greatest identified for his worldwide ministry and travels, what Father Johnson can be identified for is his culinary expertise, having participated within the “Cooks with Collars” competitors organized by the Diocese of Allentown, in 2022, for which he was awarded funds for his parish. He made the standard Indian dish “Rooster Tikka Masala”.

“My mom, Elizabeth,” mentioned he, “taught me to cook dinner it.” “I used to name her in India once in a while and ask her how a lot salt, how a lot spice, and many others. She would inform me over the cellphone how a lot so as to add. My mother is my cooking information.”

Talking of his path in the direction of the priesthood, he notes that his first college, St. Joseph’s Lesser College, was in Kalamassery, a small city in Kerala, the place he did his pre-college research for 3 years. Then the order despatched him to Italy for his novitiate upbringing and the examine of philosophy and theology.

He mentioned, “I used to be fascinated by the Catholic heritage in Italy. Along with my priestly and spiritual coaching, I ate a number of macaroni and cheese, and drank a number of wine there.” As a part of his priestly formation, he completed his BA in Philosophy from the Pontifical Metropolitan College (Urbaniana) and his BA in Theology from Angelicum, each in Rome.

He was ordained a priest on December 22, 1991, at his house parish in Panangad, Kerala, in entrance of his dad and mom, George and Elizabeth.

“It was essentially the most cherished second of my life,” he mentioned, “with 700 folks in attendance.”

After being ordained as a priest, he was despatched to be an assistant pastor and later pastor at St Joseph’s Parish in Goregaon East within the metropolitan metropolis of Mumbai in India. Whereas being a pastor, he joined the College of Mumbai to pursue his BA and MA in Sociology.

After serving as a pastor and learning sociology for six years, he returned to his native Kerala, the place he was appointed director of the Ablites of St. Preach in Carmelgeri, Alwaye, and Sacred Coronary heart School of Philosophy, additionally in Alwaye.

Father Johnson mentioned, “Educating has all the time been my ardour as a result of it makes an individual extra cultured and trendy.”

As soon as once more, this well-travelled priest returned to Italy to assist minister within the parishes of Noero and Capotera on the Italian island of Sardinia for a yr. In Nuoro, he was on the Shrine of Our Girl of Grace, which can be staffed by the Oblates of St. Joseph.

I lived there for 2 months, particularly once I heard the confessions of the pilgrims who visited the shrine from totally different components of Europe. It was an important expertise as a result of folks fearlessly opened their hearts to a overseas priest. On sure days, I heard confessions for eight hours. I actually consider that confession is without doubt one of the therapeutic secrets and techniques. In Capotera, the place I used to be assistant pastor, I celebrated Mass in Italian and led youth teams.

After his priestly mission in Sardinia, he was invited by the Oblates of St.

“Life within the space has enriched me in several methods, particularly to know the Hispanic neighborhood and tradition and to be taught their language,” mentioned the daddy. In Hazelton he felt a name to be taught Spanish as a result of, in his opinion, “Monks must be good listeners, counselors, and healers.” With this intention, he went to attend Spanish lessons at Bloomsburg College, and inside a yr, he was fluent in Spanish.

After eight years of neighborhood life with the Oblates of St.

He mentioned, “The entry into the diocese was with the gracious permission of the Chief Oblate and with the warmest welcome of the diocese authorities.”

“I have been right here for about 19 years,” he mentioned, “and I do know what folks like.” “Final yr I cooked tikka masala for 78 folks and a few of my parishioners helped me make it an enormous dinner for my folks. I served it with basmati rice – very colourful and good style.”

On this yr’s “Cooks with Collars” contest, Father Johnson cooked Louisiana-style hen with bow-tie noodles, although he did not win. He likes to cook dinner, although.

“I cook dinner Indian meals for myself, like egg curry or hen curry… I like cooking. Cooking, for me, is like meditation—I pray and cook dinner daily.”

Rooster tikka masala

Served with basmati rice. Serves 3.

Marinade components

  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons of lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 1 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 pound hen breast, reduce into 2-inch items

Sauce quantities

  • 4 tablespoons canola oil or additional virgin olive oil, divided for browning and frying
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 tablespoon of garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • Purple chili powder to style
  • 2 cups common tomato sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Salt to style
  • Chopped coriander to brighten


Combine the yogurt, lemon juice, ginger paste, garlic paste, garam masala, and salt in a big bowl and add to the hen. Refrigerate for no less than 20 minutes.

In a 12-inch skillet over medium warmth, add 2 tablespoons of the oil and brown the hen in batches; Put apart.

In the identical skillet over medium warmth, add the remaining oil and butter. Sauté onions for 3 minutes, then one after the other, add turmeric powder, coriander, garam masala and pink chili, stirring after every addition. Add tomato sauce, garlic and ginger and scale back warmth. Simmer for 10 minutes till the sauce thickens. Add the heavy cream, stir, and simmer for an additional 2 minutes. Add the hen, cowl, and simmer for 10 minutes, or till tender. Add salt to style. Garnish with chopped coriander and serve.

Greeley, Alexandra: (c) 2023 EWTN Information, Inc. Reprinted with permission from the Nationwide Catholic Register –

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