SpicyIP Tidbit: Glasgow Wants Protection for Chicken Tikka Masala

After calls for a GI for Birmingham’s Balti dishes on which Sumathi had blogged early last month, it is now chicken tikka masala’s turn.

According to the Financial Times, an MP from UK’s Labour Party, Mohammed Sarwar, has asked for a European Union protection in the form of a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) to be granted to the dish as a “Glasgow Recipe”.

He claims the dish was created in Glasgow’s Shish Mahal restaurant in the 1970s (Wikipedia too gives the same year).

Not everyone seems to share Mr.Sarwar’s enthusiasm since there are apparently 48 varieties of this dish (according to a 1998 survey by Real Curry Restaurant Guide), all of which have nothing in common but for the chicken.

Interestingly, in a letter to the FT, the former editor of the Real Curry Restaurant Guide under whose editorship the survey was conducted wrote that the dish was claimed to have been invented way back in the 1950s in London putting in doubt its true origins.

Whatever be the case, this is one spicy affair I would like to watch out for.

For those interested in reading more about curries and dishes, here’s a link to an interesting news item on a competition for curry and balti restaurants.

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