Tuesday, February 7, 2012

paleo thai red curry

i love to search the interwebs for recipes and i like to be diverse in my quest, checking vegan, vegetarian and paleo blogs on the hunt for a delicious recipe that will strike my fancy. mr. brown sugar and i are decidedly omnivores and tasty food knows no bounds.

i have a friend from high school that is a paleo and crossfit queen and she has a great blog for people that are living the paleo lifestyle, jen's gone paleo. i like to check her blog, and a couple other paleo blogs, and throw a paleo meal or two into our weekly menu- chipotle, lime and honey marinated pork chops (and paleo friendly sides), breakfast sausage with fresh thyme + sage and red bell peppers stuffed with grass fed ground beef, cauliflower "rice", homemade tomato sauce and spinach (recipe soon!).

vegetarian recipes tend to be simpler to throw into my weekly round up (just omit the meat, duh) but i always try to make my vegetarian meals full of vegetables. then, not only are we eating less meat, but we are also getting a meal that fills us with vegetables. yes, pasta with tomato sauce is vegetarian  but i try to do better- creamy broccoli and cheddar soup, basil, corn and zucchini quesadillas, and this cold orzo salad (sometimes i make it minus the chicken) is delicious and filling.

i found this red curry recipe on jen's gone paleo blog and since i have issues following recipes as-is, i added a few ingredients i had on hand to suit our palates. the mister thought it needed a little more heat, so next time i will add a thai chili or some red pepper flakes. (i have full faith in jen's recipe that it would have been delicious without my obsessive need to tweak)

thai red curry

2 T. virgin coconut oil
1 lb chicken breasts, chopped into finger-sized pieces 
1 red bell pepper, julienned
1 carrot, julienned
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp minced ginger
i bunch chard, chopped into 3 inch (or so) peices
1 head broccoli, cut into medium florets
2 T. red curry paste
1 can coconut milk 
1/2 cup chicken broth
1T fish sauce
1/2 tsp sugar
4 kaffir lime leaves (check your local asian market, they will have them fresh or frozen)
sea salt and pepper, to taste
heat 1 T. coconut oil in a saute pan (one with a lid) over medium heat, until pan is hot and oil is melted. season chicken breast pieces with salt and pepper. add the chicken to the hot pan and cook for 1 minute on each side (chicken will still be raw in the middle). remove chicken from the pan and transfer to a plate or bowl.

add 1T coconut oil to the pan and add onion and ginger, cooking until softened and fragrant, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. add garlic and cook 1 minute, stirring so the garlic doesn't burn. add the chard and stir well, until the chard cooks down quite a bit, about 5 minutes. add the rest of the veggies, stir well, cover and cook 5 minutes.

remove the lid and add the red curry paste and use a wooden spoon to move it around and stir it up,  opening up the spices. pour in the coconut milk and chicken broth and whisk. bring to a simmer, add the chicken and whole kaffir lime leaves and continue to simmer to cook chicken through, about 5 minutes.

this would make a great vegetarian dish- omit the chicken and fish sauce, use vegetable broth or water in place of the chicken broth and feel free to add eggplant, zucchini and asparagus if they are in season!

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