The dish's main component, chicken tikka, or boneless chicken pieces marinated in a mixture of yogurt and spices and then cooked in a clay tandoor oven, is itself a classic Punjabi dish. The tandoor imparts a smoky flavor to the chicken, which acquires a vivid orange or scarlet hue from turmeric, cayenne, or, often, food coloring in the marinade. Tandoor ovens gained a higher profile internationally after the restaurateur Kundan Lal Gujral built one in 1947 at Moti Mahal, his legendary restaurant in Delhi, a favorite of Indian statesmen and visiting dignitaries. The restaurant's signature dish was murgh makhani (butter chicken): tandoor-baked chicken in a sauce made with leftover marinade, butter, and tomatoes. It is possible that the cook who "invented" chicken tikka masala was attempting to replicate Moti Mahal's famous sauce. That he used canned soup to do it was very much in keeping with the convenience-minded British cooking of the postwar period.