Sunday, July 15, 2012

Chicken "Curry in a Hurry"

 I love fast, easy, tasty cooking, especially if it's paired with bold flavors and even some health beneifts. And I love curry. That's how I ended up with my infamous “curry in a hurry” go-to recipe. It is a fast one pot meal that takes additions and substitutions well, cooks in a jiff, and always comes out perfect.

This tastes fantastic, and is disgustingly healthy. It is also budget friendly, easy, and makes you look like a Iron Chef to your guests. If you like Curry, you will love this dish. Enjoy!

The main ingredient is Seeds Of Change Madras Simmer sauce (which by happy coincidence is organic and lower in sodium than many other curry sauce alternatives). I discovered this at Fresh Market and tried it on a lark and discovered that alone it's pretty tasty, but when jazzed up with a few more select additions, it really took flight. Plus it makes curry a fast affair that mimics scratch made. This serves 4 adults and more if you add more veg to the mix. I have found it in local food co-ops, in healthfood stores, and speciatly grocers like Fresh Market. If you can't find it local, try on-line. Even sells this little jar of wonderful.

1 lb skinless boneless chicken roughly cubed (you can use tofu also, just alter cooking temps)
1 red pepper, cut in chunks
1 green pepper, cut in chunks
1 fresh Jalapeno pepper diced, no seeds, or two tablespoons of jarred jalapeno rings (optional)
About ½ cup frozen greens (I use chopped mustard, takes collards, turnip or spinach, or bok choy too)
About two tablespoons olive oil (I never measure, I just coat the pan by eye and go to work)
1 full jar Seeds of Change Madras Simmer Sauce
Optional ground red pepper to taste to get it hotter if you want. If you add the jalapenos it will be pretty spicy, and this is from someone who eats heavily spiced foods.  When I serve to guests who say they eat spicy, just the jalapeno is enough to set tongues to wagging. But in the hot weather, adding that extra 1/2 teaspoon or teaspoon ground red pepper takes it up to a blissful level of taste and tingle that's a perfect fit for the summer swelter.

 Also optional: any other veg you have around.  Frozen works especially well here. I’ve added everything from Snow Peas and Scallions, to Cauliflower and Okra. When it comes to the veg portion, you can get very creative. Just keep in mind cooking times (things like snow peas or scallions add more toward the end). Also keep in mind how far sauce will stretch.
In a non stick pan or skillet large enough to hold all the above ingredients so they are not heaped over each other (this will be a 12” – don’t skimp), throw in the olive oil, the veg, then the chicken, and cook over medium-high heat until the chicken can be cut with a dull spatula and is cooked mostly through. This is about 15 minutes give or take, depending on your flame and pan.
The peppers should just begin to soften.
Pour in the simmer sauce, spend a few minutes mixing to coat everything evenly. Keep the heat up for another five minutes or so, then reduce to medium and let simmer. You want the sauce to reduce (cook down so that it’s not as fluid). You will need to periodically stir. I find a spatter guard helpful at this point (it is a screen that goes over your pan to prevent oil or sauces from splattering all over).
Cook like this until sauce is thicker, but not caramelized (burned a little).
Serve plain, with naan, pita, or as I do: with basmati brown rice.
Pairs well with a nice full bodied, juicy red wine and a deck overlooking something scenic, or with a TV tray, recliner and e-reader.
*Naan is an Indian flat bread made in special ovens. You can get it frozen at Indian and some Asian grocers. It is a total bad carb fiesta and indecently yummy.


Laoch of Chicago said...

Nifty, thanks for posting this.

Ursula said...

Thanks Laoch! Hope you enjoy!!!!