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Coconut Chicken Curry

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This has to be one of the easiest, quickest, and most delicious dinners. It’s got lovely lean protein in the form of chicken, and packed with an assortment of colourful vegetables for an abundance of nourishing vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. You can use any veggies of choice of course – the recipe below just includes whatever we happened to have in the fridge on the night I decided to document this!

The other great thing about this dish is it uses tumeric – one of the most amazing herbs when it comes to health benefits! Granted, the amount per serve is not quite what you’d call therapeutic value, but even small quantities consumed regularly can contribute to positive health outcomes. And it gives me an opportunity to talk about one of my favourite herbs!

Using tumeric in cooking also means that you are using the whole herb, so you get all the benefits. This is different to taking a supplement, as supplements are often formulated to contain certain isolates of the herb for specific therapeutic outcomes. For this reason supplements are fabulous when specific health outcomes are being targeted and are desired, but wholefood nutrition through every day food preparation is, in my opinion, the best way to bring about optimal health.

So just what are these health benefits of tumeric you ask?

Tumeric is:
Anti-inflammatory – studies have shown that particular isolates of tumeric have proved to be as effective as prescription anti-inflammatory medications.
Anti-platelet – meaning it thins the blood, though when using in cooking not of concern if you are taking blood thinners such as warfarin – caution however should you choose to take a supplement as effects of warfarin may be increased.
Antioxidant – helping to eliminate toxic free radicals that promote disease and ageing processes in the body.
Hypolipidaemic – meaning it helps to lower cholesterol.
Choleretic – meaning it increases the amount of bile secreted by the liver thus aiding digestion of fats, absorption of fat soluble vitamins, and elimination of waste products.

Enough of the nerdy stuff though, and onto the recipe…..

Coconut Chicken Curry
Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 tbs EV cold pressed coconut oil
1 shallot – finely chopped
1 small onion – finely chopped
2 garlic cloves – crushed
1 tbs palm sugar – grated
200mL coconut cream
2 carrots – thinly sliced
500g skin free chicken breast, cut into bite size strips, use free range pasture fed chicken when you can get it
1 tsp Garam Masala spice mix
1 tsp Tumeric powder
1 cup green beans – cut into bite size lengths
1 cup snow peas – cut in half
1 head broccoli – florets cut
1 cup red cabbage – shredded
1 large field mushroom – sliced
salt and pepepr
bean shoots and fresh coriander leaves – to dress

Method:

Melt coconut oil in a wok/large based pan and cook shallot and onion until clear.
Add garlic and palm sugar, cooked until palm sugar dissolves then add coconut cream and carrots, cooking until carrots become slightly tender.
Add chicken and spices, stir well, and poach for about 10 minutes on low/medium heat, or until the largest pieces of chicken are almost cooked through. Time this bit well – if you take a large piece and cut it open it should still be a little pink in the middle. It has a bit more time in the wok yet, and you don’t want it to overcook and become dry.
Turn the heat up to high and reduce the sauce down to a desired consistency. We prefer a richer flavour so reduce it down until just a few tablespoons of sauce remain, but if you prefer more sauce, such as to serve over rice, then you can skip the reduction step altogether.
Add remaining vegetable and cook for just a few minutes, just long enough to bring a little tenderness to them yet still maintain a crisp freshness.
Season with salt and pepper, and upon serving dress with bean shoots and fresh coriander leaves.
Sit down, relax, and enjoy!

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