This dish is balanced with proteins, carbs, lots of colorful veggies and anti-oxidants. Tumeric not only gives the meal lovely color but has wonderful anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer properties. I love sneaking it into many of my meals. The chili and spices don't just taste great, but they can raise your metabolism too! And there is coconut in this dish -- enough has been said about this wonder food.
Preparing this dish may look a little more complex, but it's actually much easier than it looks. Here are a couple of tricks:
- Trick 1: Batch make your staple carbs like mashed potatoes or rice. Freeze some so that you can easily defrost and add them to other recipes.
- Trick 2: Use store bought prepared pastes and spices.
- Trick 3: Some vegetables are easier to wash than others -- courgettes and bell peppers take just seconds to rinse and cut into chunks.
- Trick 4: Cook in parallel. This recipe allows you to make the curry sauce and bell peppers first, and while they are stewing, go ahead and start preparing the chicken and additional vegetables.
- Trick 5: Save the left over sauces and freeze them in an ice-cube tray or small container. They can add instant flavor to other dishes or can be turned into quick soups for other occasions.
I hope you enjoy experimenting with this recipe. Happy Cooking!
INGREDIENTS (Serves 4)
Chicken breast, deboned: 4 pieces
Tumeric powder: 1/2 teaspoon
Chili powder or paprika: 1/2 teaspoon (optional)
Courgette, 1 cut into rounds or cubes
Onions, 1/2 a large onion cut into rings
Olive oil: 4 tablespoons
Salt & pepper to taste.
Curry & Bell Pepper Sauce
Store-bought red curry paste: 1 tablespoon
Olive Oil or Coconut Oil: 1 tablespoon
Coconut cream: 1 cup + Water: 1 cup
Chicken stock cube: 1/2
Thai fish sauce 1 tablespoon or sea salt to taste
Brown sugar: 1 tablespoon or to taste
Lime: juice from 1 lime or more to taste
Bell Peppers: 1 large, quartered & de-seeded
Coriander leaves (Cilantro) or Basil
For quick carbs: Pre-made mashed potatoes or boiled rice
Curry sauce: Add oil to a sauce pot. Heat gently. Add curry paste. Use a wooden spoon to stir fry on low heat. When fragrant (usually 2-3 minutes), add 2 table spoons of coconut cream. Stir fry for another 2 minutes. Add remaining coconut cream. Bring to a simmer.
Add water, bell peppers, fish sauce, sugar and lime juice. Crumble the stock cube into pot. Bring to a full boil for five minutes and stir. Cover with a lid, turn off the flame and leave to peppers stew for 10 minutes. Remove bell peppers and set aside. Keep sauce warm.
B) Prepare Chicken and Vegetables
Chicken: Dry and coat lightly with tumeric and chili/paprika, salt and pepper.
Heat a frying pan. Test if it is hot enough by sprinkling a few drops of water --- it is hot enough when the water drops turn to steam almost immediately.
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add chicken breast with skin side down to get a nice sear. Leave for about 2-3 minutes. Lift cleanly with a spatula. Turn and cook the other side for 3 minutes. Turn back over to skin side down, reduce heat and leave lid on, for another 3 minutes.
Take breast off the pan. Rest on a warm plate.
Vegetables: Place onion rings into a skillet with 2 tablespoons of oil. Caramalize onions slowly.
When brown, add in courgettes. Cook for 2 minutes. Set aside.
C) Assemble and plate
Place a layer of mashed potatoes or boiled rice on the bottom plate.
Next, add layer of vegetables and onions. Follow with 1 chicken breast, then bell peppers.
Using a large spoon, gently pour 3 tablespoons of the curry sauce around the stack of food.
Finish with coriander leaves and drizzle a little more olive oil if you'd like.
D) Tips and adaptations
For fish lovers: replace chicken with salmon
For vegetarians: replace chicken with thick wedges of tempeh. You can lightly panfry these or cover in the spice mix and heat in the oven. Replace the fish sauce with temari or seasalt. Replace the chicken stock cube with a vegetable stock cube.