Friday, September 14, 2012

Thai Green Chicken Curry with Jasmine Rice

I am a major fan of bold flavors, so it's no surprise that I love curry: Indian Curry with all its big spicy flavors, Thai Curry with its hints of lemongrass and complexity. There's really not a curry I don't like! If I'm being TOTALLY honest though, I have a soft spot for the green curries, both Indian and Thai. I love a jalfrezi, but in the summer, it's the Thai flavors that really get me going. You had me at ginger, lemon grass, basil and cilantro, oh and garlic and onions. Oh and sweet potatoes. Oh and coconut milk. You get the picture! This curry requires a little prep, but it's super easy once you get going and the leftovers are fantastic too. It also looks pretty, and that's just as valid a reason as any to cook something! Try this curry for an end-of-summer dinner and then we'll get some Indian Curry going for the fall. Read the full recipe after the jump.

Thai Green Chicken Curry with Jasmine Rice (Serves 4-6 generously)
You will need:

  • 1 lb Chicken thighs (skinless and boneless)
  • 1 whole chicken breast (skinless and boneless)
  • 2 T Siracha chili sauce
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 T Soy sauce 
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped fine
  • 1 T chopped cilantro
  • 1 T kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 2 T olive oil
Sweet Potatoes
  • 1 T shallots chopped rough
  • 2 T buttermilk
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled, chopped in about 1.5" cubes
  • 1 large  yellow onion
  • 1/2 T butter 
  • 2 T Thai Green Curry Paste
  • 2 T vegetable oil 
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
  • 1 T fish sauce (I prefer 3 Crabs Viet Huong)
  • 1/2 large yellow onion, sliced in 1/4 inch strips
  • 1/4 c cilantro, chopped
  • 1 13.6 oz can Coconut Milk 
  • 1/4 C finely chopped basil
  • 1/4 C lemon grass stalk, finely chopped
  • 1 T fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
  • 1 T fresh ginger, sliced thinly
  • 1/4 C scallions
  • 1 8 oz can water chestnuts
  • 1 8 oz can bamboo shoots
  • 1 tsp kosher salt plus salt and pepper to taste
Jasmine Rice (2 cups dried, prepared according to package directions)

Marinate chicken with Siracha, lime juice, soy sauce, garlic and cilantro for 6-12 hours, or even overnight. You could do all thighs or all breasts. I like a breast and a thigh. In my curry. Prep the sweet potatoes by heating butter on medium in a medium sauce pan. Add shallots, saute until translucent - 2-4 minutes. Add sweet potatoes and buttermilk and toss to combine. Cover and cook for 10 minutes or until just tender. These will continue to cook in the curry sauce, so you don't want them to be soggy or smushy. Prep the marinated chicken by heating 2 T olive oil in a pan, and browning the sides so they are just seared. Transfer to a plate. In a large sauce pan, heat vegetable oil on medium. Add onions stirring until they are beginning to brown and soften (5-7 minutes). Add garlic, stirring until softened - do not let the garlic brown. Stir 2 large tablespoons of curry paste with the onions and garlic. Add half the ginger and lemon grass, and cook for about 1-2 minutes. Add coconut milk and fish sauce and stir vigorously to combine - bring to a simmer. Here's where the tasting begins. Taste the sauce and adjust for salt and pepper and amount of curry. Don't go for spice just yet. The chicken hasn't been added and that will up the heat level. Gour-Maybe note: This is also where I get my rice going. I do two cups Jasmine rice, three cups water and a tablespoon of butter. Prepare according to package directions.  Add the seared chicken, and cook for about 5 more  minutes. Add basil, half the scallions and taste again. Keep the pan covered. Begin to adjust the flavors to your preference. I would then add the remaining ginger, lemon grass and cilantro. I like big flavors. But if one of those ingredients isn't your favorite, by all means - adjust! After the chicken has cooked about 10 minutes total, add the water chestnuts, sweet potatoes and bamboo shoots. You don't want these to be too soft, so cook for about 5 minutes more. Adjust seasonings again to taste. Serve curry over bowls of jasmine rice. Top with scallions, any extra cilantro or basil, and maybe a few spots of Siracha.

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