Friday, April 13, 2012

Coconut Chicken Curry with Lemon-ginger Tea-infused Rice

Several things about this meal. First, there are a lot of veggies in it, making it a quick, one pot meal.  Well, two pots if you include the rice pot. Second, Claire was skeptical about the curry, having had some recent experiences with tumeric overload.  She admitted to being won over by the coconut milk, and the fresh coriander. Third.  I don't know what made me decide to add a tea bag to the rice as it was cooking, but o.m.g.  What a wonderful, subtle flavor. I'm definitely doing it again.

Coconut Curry Chicken
Feel free to substitute whatever vegetables you have in your drawer. This would be excellent with broccoli, red peppers, and eggplant. I finely crushed my coriander and cumin seeds in my mortar and pestle- you could also use a spice grinder if you have one. The fresh grind makes a huge difference.

Adapted from "Chicken in Spice-Laden Coconut Sauce,"
from The San Francisco Chronicle Cookbook.
1 T vegetable or canola oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
8 garlic cloves, minced
1 inch piece of fresh ginger root, minced
1 T coriander seeds, crushed
1 tsp cumin seeds, crushed
1/2 tsp tumeric
3-4 dried red peppers, or red pepper flakes to taste
salt to taste
2 lbs. chicken breast, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
1 can tomatoes (or 1 large fresh tomato, cut into chunks)
1 small zucchini, cut into chunks
2 small carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
1 14-oz can light coconut milk
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1-2 chopped scallions (always include the green part!)

Heat oil in a large pan and cook onions until soft.  Add garlic and ginger, and stir.  Add crushed coriander and cumin seeds, then salt and tumeric and stir. Add chicken pieces and stir until they are coated with the onion-spice mixture. Add the carrots and let simmer for 5-10 minutes. Add the tomatoes and zucchini.  Let simmer for another 5 minutes, then add coconut milk. Add water if necessary, and let simmer for about 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is tender. Stir in fresh cilantro and scallions before serving with Tea-infused Rice, below.

Tea-infused Rice
I had wanted to make jasmine rice, but had run out, which made me start contemplating jasmine tea infusion, but I was a little worried that it might be too floral. Turns out I was out of jasmine tea anyway, but had some lemon-ginger tea. Hmm.  Throw in half a handful of chopped scallions and cilantro, and we're off to the culinary races... Keep in mind that I did this, as always, in my rice cooker, so you may want to adjust the water to your method of cooking and taste.

2 cups of uncooked rice
3 cups of water
1 lemon-ginger tea bag
2 T chopped scallions
2 T chopped cilantro (optional)

Put water and rice together in a small saucepan with a lid.  Hang the teabag over the side of the pan so that it is submerged in the water. Be careful if you have a gas stove so that the tag doesn't burn. Bring the water to a boil, and then turn the heat down to a simmer. Let it simmer for about 20 minutes, then leave it covered for about 5 more minutes.  Remove the teabag.  Fluff the rice so that the tea-stained grains of rice are mixed in well. Fold in the scallions and cilantro.

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1 comment:

  1. Yummy looking Coriander chicken curry dish when u get time, I love the coriander flavor as well. Pics are awesome..