You know those movies where there’s a comet that’s going to smash into planet Earth and the characters have only 24 hours left to live? Well as a foodie, I always have one burning question… what they would choose as their final meal? (Don’t laugh!) If it were me, I have no doubt that I would choose a curry! My only quandary would be, which curry to choose? You see, the more I explore, the more I realize that there is a whole world of curries out there, and honestly I love them all! I think it’s the spicy complexity that I am enamoured with, and how each exotic spice blend gives the dish a different character.
Recently I discovered that Japanese cuisine has its own curry. I noticed it in a few blogs that I follow and then I found this enticing recipe in “The Flavour Principle” by Lucy Waverman and Beppi Crosariol, and just had to try it. This is a rich, fragrant curry that has the added sweetness of some chopped apple. The recipe called for the dish to be served with cucumber pickles, which added the perfect amount of acidity to the meal. My husband and I both loved this recipe, and I know that I will make it again. I hope you like it too. I have included the recipes for the Japanese curry powder and the cucumber pickles, so that you can enjoy the whole experience!
Well, you know that I am going to share my curry with the gang at Fiesta Friday! Since we have been partying for a year now, I am certain that many of my friends love curries. Please join us at our host Angie’s site, The Novice Gardener. I know that you’ll make this part of your Friday routine!
Japanese Chicken Curry
1 ½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup thinly sliced onions
½ cup coarsely grated peeled apple
2 tablespoons Japanese curry powder (below)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups chicken stock
Salt and pepper to taste
1 – 2 tablespoons sherry wine vinager
4 cups baby spinach
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
Cut the chicken thighs into 2 – inch pieces. Season with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken in batches and sear for a few minutes until lightly golden. Set aside.
Reduce heat to medium. Add remaining 2 tablespoons oil and onions to skillet and sauté for 2 minutes or until the onions are softened. Add apple, curry powder, ginger and garlic and sauté for one minute or until fragrant. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring for 1 or 2 minutes to cook out the floury taste. Stir in the stock a little at a time until well combined. Bring to a boil, stirring. Reduce heat and simmer for 2 minutes to thicken. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Return the chicken and any juices to the skillet and cook in sauce for 10 minutes, or until the meat is cooked through. Add sherry wine vinegar one tablespoon at a time to taste.
Stir in spinach and cook for 1 minute, until the spinach is wilted.
Serve with rice and garnish with cilantro just before serving.This dish is very nice served with cucumber pickles, featured below.
Japanese Curry Powder
Makes 4 1/2 tablespoons
2 tablespoons turmeric
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground cardamom
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon ground fennel
Combine all spices in a small bowl and stir well. Keeps well in a sealed container.
Makes 1 cup
1 large English cucumber, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon kosher salt
¼ cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons mirin
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
Toss cucumber slices with kosher salt. Place in a colander and let sit in the sink or over a bowl for 15 minutes, or until the cucumbers are wilted and much of their water has been extracted.
Press on the cucumbers to squeeze out remaining liquid and pat dry with paper towels. Transfer to a bowl.
Add rice vinegar, mirin, and sugar and toss to combine.