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Time to get cooking again!

March 6th, 2010

Well, for several reasons my cooking has been on the down low lately, at least I did not get around to making anything out of the ordinary and never got around to posting. What I did cook a couple of times now is a simple Indian style curry chicken. I bought some very tasty curry mix in a Persian store, Madras Curry Powder and the brand seems to be Camel. Comes in a pretty green tin and only costs $3.99 for 500 grams! Can’t beat that. The mix is very pleasant with a wonderful “curry aroma”, not too spicy either, which is great for the kids.

To make my curry I first cook some onion in oil until translucent. Then I make a hole in the middle of the pan and dump in a good tablespoon of curry powder and let it cook up for 30 sec or so – the “hole” gets dry very fast and allows me to toast the spices in the same pan. Then I mix it all together and add chicken pieces, usually skin and boneless chicken thy as it’s cheap and tastes better than chicken breast. I cut them into bite size pieces. I let this cook and brown, scraping the nice browned bits back into itself, sometimes have to add a bit of water. Of course you can get creative here and add other things, last night I used up a container of mild salsa and once off the heat added about two tablespoons of sour cream, both left over from a burrito dinner last week.

I serve this with one of my kid’s favorite things, “yellow rice”. I add about a scant tsp of tumeric (or sometimes some saffron) to the rice and mix it in, add some butter once finished at times. Some salad or simply a handful of scallions cut into 1 or 2 inch pieces to nibble on – or sliced and sprinkled on top. A quarter lemon or lime to sprinkle over on each plate looks nice and adds some nice acidity according to each diner’s wish. Tastes great, the house smells fantastic, and it’s so easy that I’m wondering why I used to buy simmer sauces or things like that.

I’ve also added sliced mushrooms to the onions before, tomato paste, things like that. Variations are easy to invent for this quick and easy midweek dinner. Make twice the amount of chicken and you have some wonderful leftovers that you can turn into a great curry chicken salad – add some currants, a bit mayonnaise, things like that.

Sorry, no picture, but it should be easy to envision the yellow and green colors on your plate.

The weather seems to finally be turning towards the better here in Northern California and I have many plans for open fire cooking. For one on my big green egg, which is probably the single best cooker I’ve ever bought or used, but I also want to cook on a fire pit and fire up the good old weber really soon. Matter of fact, I think I’ll check the freezer now and see what we could make tonight :-)

More to come, I also plan to cook quite some food from Ad Hoc at Home, a fantastic book. Inspiration seems to be catching up with me again, the gray skies are gone, flowers start to bloom, hopefully we’re done with the winter gloom now. Farmer’s market tomorrow!

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