Friday, 7 August 2009

Coconut and Pineapple Chicken Curry

Caught in (I swear I lose hours of my life every time I click over to there, I just can't tear myself away!) I came across this delicious sounding recipe from Meseidy at The Noshery and decided to give it a try.

Ingredients (serves 4)

2 Chicken breasts, diced
1 tbsp Vegetable oil
1 Onion, diced
3 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 tsp Ginger, minced
3/4 cup (180ml) Coconut milk
1/2 a chicken bouillon cube
2 tbsp Madras curry powder
1 cup (?g) Pineapple chunks
2 Carrots, shredded
1 Red bell pepper, sliced
1/4 cup Cilantro, chopped


My supermarket didn't seem to have vegetable oil, and I didn't want to add the flavour of olive oil to the mix, so I went with canola oil instead.

The only chicken flavoured cube in the stock section was for chicken consomme soup? I cut one in half and used that instead. It didn't adversely affect the dish, so I'm going to say it was fine.

Japan seems to have hundreds of curry cubes but they're all to make Japanese style curry (which seems to me more a stew with curry taste, rather than an Indian variety). I went to the spice section and bought the 'hot' tin of spice and hoped for the best, but I find Japanese curry all tastes pretty much the same so we'll see.

Cilantro: I had dried coriander leaf, which I added to the pot, then I garnished with some Italian parsley I found while shopping to get the look (if not the taste).

I grated the ginger and garlic instead of mincing; it was easier so sue me.

There's quite a lot of cutting/chopping/grating involved so I found it easier to do it first.

1) Heat a large pot over a medium-high heat, add oil, ginger, garlic, and onions. Saute until onions are tender.

2) Add chicken, bouillon, and curry, and stir until chicken in well coated and browned.

3) Add pineapple and coconut milk, bring to the boil, then turn down to medium and simmer for 10 minutes.

When it came to the pineapple I wasn't sure how much a cup converted to in metric (I guessed 250g, but does anyone know?), so I just bought one of the fresh pineapple mini-punnets that you can see in the ingredients picture. Also the cans of coconut milk were 5.5oz/165ml. As this recipe calls for 3/4 cup (180ml) of coconut milk I decided not to open a new can for the tiny bit extra, and instead added a little water.

4)Add carrots, red pepper, and cilantro, and simmer for another 5 minutes

5) Serve hot over side of choice (the original recipe calls for rice noodles but I went for brown rice), and garnish with cilantro.

Overall I really liked this curry, but I wish it had been hotter. This was entirely the fault of Japanese curry powder producers, rather than anything to do with the recipe itself, so next time I'm in a foreign food store I'll have to see if I can get better spices. I was worried that the pineapple was going to be overpowering but it wasn't at all. I have the other half of this in a jar in my fridge, and I'm sure it will only get better given time for all the flavours to meld together.

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