Easy Unauthentic Chicken Curry for Real Food People
Do you and your significant other struggle with Palate Incompatibility?
It's a disorder I just made up. I should work for the pharmaceutical companies.
Anyway, when it comes to food, I'm game for just about anything. Vietnamese, Japanese, Korean, German . . . I can think of dishes I enjoy from almost anywhere around the globe.
I also like to try out-of-the-ordinary delicacies. Alligator tastes like--what else--chicken. Tough chicken with a fishy taste. Frog legs also have that fishy-chicken taste, although it's far more tender than gator. But you only get a tiny bit from those itty-bitty legs, so it hardly seems worth the time and effort.
I tried rattlesnake a long time ago, but I remember its tough texture and thinking, the only reason anyone eats this is to say they've eaten a snake.
My husband, on the other hand, won't veer outside his standard menu of meat and potatoes. Onions and russet potatoes are the only vegetables he allows to touch his lips. Maybe iceberg lettuce if it's on a burger or sandwich. He'll eat your beefs, your chickens, and your porks, as long as they're not seasoned with anything more exotic than salt, pepper, and A-1 Steak Sauce.
Don't try to sneak anything in there--he inspects each bite for foreign material, using the tines of his fork to separate potential offenders.
I'm Not Running a Diner Here
So I cook for myself and for him separately. My dinners tend to be more colorful. He prefers a color pallete of brown and white. I mix flavors and add some heat. He likes to stick with the basic flavors and keep it mild.
This gets old quickly. I don't like to spend a lot of time in the kitchen, whether it's to cook or clean dishes. But I do like to eat good food--nothing powdered or poured out of a box--so throwing together easy recipes is essential. And although I enjoy authentic tastes from cultures around the world, I'd rather not spend a fortune in the spice aisle at the Asian market or spend five minutes peeling ginger root with a spoon.
Lazy-foodie Hack: Chicken Curry
This curry recipe involves little prep and not many dirty dishes. I found a recipe I liked on Allrecipes.com and simply morphed it into something I would actually make on a regular basis. It is by no means authentic and doesn't pretend to be.
My Incredibly Inauthentic Chicken Curry includes the following ingredients:
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil or butter
- 2 tablespoons curry powder
- 1/2 medium-sized sweet onion
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic or two cloves
- 1 can Thai Kitchen coconut milk (about 14 ounces)
- 1/2 jar Newman's Own mild salsa
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup (or regular sugar)
- salt and pepper
- 2 pounds chicken breast, diced into 1/2-inch cubes
- Diced fresh pineapple, somewhere around a cup, optional
Start Your Skillets
- Heat oil over medium heat. You can use either a pot or skillet.
- Mix in curry powder. Allow the spice to cook for several minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add onion and garlic. Cook until translucent aka semi-transparent or a little bit see-through, about five minutes or so.
- Add diced chicken breast. Cook for about ten minutes.
- Add coconut milk, salsa, maple syrup, and pineapple if you're using it.
- Simmer on low for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
How About You?
Do you struggle to find foods that everyone likes?
Variety Is the Curry of Life
I will add here that I don't usually cook this with the meat right away. I'll leave the chicken out and make the sauce only, then throughout the week I'll cook a chicken breast in the skillet, adding sauce and leftover Jasmine rice to make a quick one-skillet meal. I also get grass-fed ground beef, brown some of that, and do the same thing adding sauce and rice. You could always go the meatless route, too.
I put it all on top of a bed of greens, or you could steam some broccoli or cauliflower and use that instead. Or don't use any veggies at all. I'm not gonna judge.
Ingredients? Let Me Explain
Why did I choose these particular ingredients? There's a method to my madness.
I choose Newman's Own original salsa over other brands because it contains all real-food ingredients. No flavorings or other stuff. The diced tomatoes and puree combined with peppers and onions works well.
I'm sure the maple syrup looks weird to most people, but I use it in place of refined sugar all the time. You can use regular granulated sugar instead--it doesn't require much, only a little to add a touch of sweetness.
I like the Thai Kitchen coconut milk because the only added ingredient is guar gum. Others tend to have preservatives and junk.
I ordered pineapple curry several years ago at a Thai restaurant in Tampa. I've added fresh pineapple to my curry sauce ever since.
So if you're a curry-loving foodie with limited kitchen time and Palate Incompatibility Disorder (gonna make millions on that one), give this chicken curry a try. It's super-versatile so you can experiment with different proteins, but I wouldn't recommend the rattlesnake.