[Holistic Squid note: I love EVERYTHING that Monica makes, but I especially love when she makes magic with ingredients. In this recipe, Monica uses cauliflower as the thickener for the curry, eliminating the need for processed cornstarch or other nastiness. Savory, nutritious, and won’t leave you feeling like you ate a box of bricks – Thanks, Real Food Devotee!]
I used to refer to colds as seasonal. I always perceived the change of seasons and winter in particular as times when we tend to get sick. Lately, I’ve started to suspect people are coming down with colds all the time. Maybe it’s my perception that has changed. Maybe I’m just taking more notice of ‘the common cold.’ I’m not sure. Thinking back, I never once recall my grandmother being sick with a cold (she lived with us). I remember my parents being sick with a cold on very rare occasions, and my siblings and I, while sick more often than our parents, not so much as I see in the generations after us.
I suspect our food, among other things, as the major factor of change. There is a growing, gaping chasm between a number of nutrients and immuno-fortifying factors bestowed on our ancestors by their food supply compared with that of our modern food choices. Curry can be prepared so that it is not only very nourishing, but its many medicinal spices can be immune boosters as well.
I adore dishes that are equally good hot or cold. I also love meaty sauces that are perfect ladled over veggies, grains or nothing at all. Both are true of this Coconut Chicken Curry. If served as a warm lunch on a hot summer day, the heat and warming spices of curry might be overwhelming, but try serving this dish cool, over steamed veggies and enjoy the dance of curry spices on your tongue without the all overheating of a hot plate of curry. It’s a great way to give your body and mind a little wake-up and a happy boost.
Coconut chicken curry ingredients
- 1 whole chicken OR (skip steps 1-3 below and use 4 cups of previously make chicken stock (not canned or from a carton) and 3-4 cups of cooked chicken meat sliced – buy pasture raised chickens here
- 3 tablespoons butter, preferably from cows raised on pasture
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil – find it here
- 2 medium yellow onions, chopped
- 1-inch knob ginger, peeled and grated
- 5 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
- 1/2 – 1 head cauliflower, rough chopped
- 2 (15-ounce) whole, unsweetened coconut milk – find it here
- 2 tablespoons curry powder – make your own here
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 teaspoon red chili flakes
- unrefined sea salt to taste
- 1/4 cup cilantro leaves, plus more for garnish
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
Coconut chicken curry method
- Place your whole chicken in a crockpot, cover with filtered water, and cook on low for approximately 3-4 hours until meat is cooked.
- Remove chicken from pot, pull meat from bones, and place in a separate bowl.
- Reserve 4 cups of chicken broth for this recipe, save the rest and freeze the chicken bones to add to a future pot of bone broth.
- Rough chop 1/2-1 head cauliflower and cook in chicken broth until very tender.** The amount of cauliflower you add will determine how thick your curry sauce becomes.
- You may either grate the peeled garlic and ginger by hand or send them through the shredder on your food processor.
- In another heavy bottomed pot, add butter and coconut oil (the coconut oil will help your butter not to burn), diced onions, garlic, and ginger and cook on medium stove heat until soft and fragrant.
- Add all of your spices EXCEPT the cilantro and cook while stirring for 3 minutes.
- Add chicken stock and cooked cauliflower, coconut milk, lemon juice and cilantro leaves to your curry mixture.
- Turn off stove heat and puree mixture using an immersion blender or in batches in a blender. ***
- Add chicken to curry and taste for salt or add more cayenne if you are a heat seeker.
- Serve over rice, steamed, sautÃ©ed or fried veggies or on its own. Garnish with cilantro leaves.
*Learn how to make your own curry powder here.
**If you want to use the cauliflower stalk, you should peel it to avoid tough fibrous bits in your curry.
***If you have (or aspire to have) a real food kitchen and a busy life, invest in a food processor and immersion blender. Your tummy, hands, and free time will thank you!
Active Time: 30 minutes
Yields: 2-3 quarts
This post was generously contributed by Monica Ford of Real Food Devotee. Monica’s recipes will make your mouth water and your tummy purr. If you’re lucky enough to live in Los Angeles, Real Food Devotee can make your life easier by delivering nutrient dense goodies directly to your door.
photo credit: An Eye Full Studio