I know everything should start with an onion, or so the saying goes. Most of my cooking does. But not always. Sometimes just garlic will do and occasionally not at all. When I made this dish I started with minced beef not sure of what I would add next. The final result was a tasty speedy supper that required little work or preparation. I call that a winner! Continue reading
Dal is a favourite of mine, I have blogged about it more than once. Sometimes as a whole meal with egg (you know I love them), often with tadka (a perky mixture of spice and aromatics), always a cheerful sunshine yellow (although I am partial to a black spiced dal makhani too swirled with a little cream and I will share more on that soon).
This dal is cheerful and elegant with lemon and coconut. It is one to make in a big pot for friends for a summer weekend lunch, or one to make and store in the fridge for comfort, or in the freezer for a later date. I must have had four bowls of this. I don’t bother soaking the dal, which means it takes longer to cook it, but it will still be done in 40 minutes. And it just cooks away, right? It needs little attention. Continue reading
When is a pie not a pie? And why do people get so mad about it? Surely pastry meeting another gorgeous thing can only be celebrated, but no, people feel very strongly about this. Pie fascism is real.
Which brings me on to pie rage. People aren’t happy with people not encasing a pie filling in pastry and calling it a PIE. But folks, it is, and even if you feel it isn’t, feel free to surround this gorgeous chicken curry filling with pastry. I made this pie two ways, entirely enclosed in shortcrust pastry top and bottom, and with a puff pastry top, no bottom. I prefer the puff pastry lid. Continue reading
I have an unusual and very tasty recipe for you today, ripe from the shores of Grenada. Grenada is known for high quality cocoa and spice, and they meet here in this lively Coconut & Chocolate Chicken Curry.
Do you consider chocolate a sweet or savoury ingredient? For me dark chocolate is intensely savoury, and a brilliant secret addition to many dishes, enhancing with a deep low rumble. It is perfect with chilli and spices, which of course Mexicans have known for a long time. Mole, a savoury Mexican dish rich with chocolate, is a superb example of this.
Recently in Grenada, I had the pleasure of doing a cooking session with Esther and Omega at True Blue Bay. I cooked with them last time too. They are fun, and know exactly what to do with the vibrant ingredients available in Grenada. So many spices, and the chocolate which Grenada is rich with.
This time we made a Coconut & Chocolate Curried Chicken. A small amount of chocolate enriches the spicy sauce, with the creamy coconut lightening it. It is surprising, and it is something that all chocaholics and savoury food fans will enjoy. I have adapted Esther & Omega’s recipe for you to make at home. It is a fun one and will for sure intrigue anyone that you make it for! Ask them to guess what the secret ingredient is.
Recipe: Coconut & Chocolate Curried Chicken
Serves 4 – 6
1.5kg chicken thigh meat, skin removed and chopped to approximately 2 inch segments
Chicken marinade: 2 spring onions, 2 tbsp chopped fresh chives, 2 tbsp fresh coriander, 4 cloves peeled garlic, one inch of peeled fresh ginger, 1 tbsp light oil like groundnut or sunflower)
250g ripe tomatoes or the equivalent in good tinned or passata
200ml coconut milk
1 large green pepper, core and seeds removed and diced into 1cm dice
2 tbsp curry powder
1 heaped tsp ground cumin
4 cardamom pods, coarsely crushed
2 chipotle chilles in adobo (or dried chipotle chilles, or a chilli of your choice if you can’t source either), chopped fine
juice of 1 lemon
2 bay leaves
50g good dark chocolate
1 nice apple, cored and diced (fine to leave the skin on)
light oil for frying, like groundnut or sunflower
sea salt & fresh cracked black pepper
Blend all marinade ingredients and add to the chicken. Marinade in the fridge for as long as you can, at least a half hour, up to 4 hours.
Heat a couple of tablespoons of oil over a medium-high heat until sealed all over.
Add all of the dry ingredients, lemon juice and the green pepper and cook for a few minutes.
Add the coconut milk, chilli and tomatoes and cook for 30 minutes.
Add the chocolate and allow to melt through. Leave for a few minutes over a low heat.
Check for seasoning and adjust with sea salt and black pepper.
Ready to eat! Superb with rice, and take care not to eat the cardamom pods and the bay leaves, they are just for flavour.
I know how annoying it is when I say: please go out of your way to find this impossible ingredient, I promise it is worth it. But it is! In this journey we have taken together over seven and a half years of blogging, we are all now toasting and grinding our own spices, right? And doesn’t it make a big difference? Well, trust me when I tell you that getting your paws on some fresh turmeric makes a huge difference here too. It is also fairly straightforward. I always used to peel it, but the chef that I cooked with in Malaysia (at The Meritus Pelangi Hotel) made a paste with it unpeeled and it made no difference. I now consider myself educated. I was fussing unnecessarily, which is really not how I like to roll.
Fresh turmeric is having a bit of a hipster moment, but some of us (cough) have been using it for a long time. The hipsters are on to a good thing with their turmeric tea though. It is ridiculously good for you. It is a really potent anti inflammatory agent, is brilliant for easing burns (the powder mixed with double cream – thank you Maunika for that tip) and there is lots of research that indicates that it is helpful in cancer treatment. It is very tasty too.
I suspect many people store dried turmeric in their cupboard for ages and then think it is tasteless. Dried turmeric, like all spices, needs to be fresh and stored in an air tight container. Fresh turmeric is very different and is an aromatic delight. A rhizome like ginger, it has some similar properties, but is floral by comparison. A lot of supermarkets stock it in the UK these days. Indian food shops do too. Continue reading
Hello! I’m Niamh (Knee-uv! It’s Irish).
You are very welcome here. Eat Like a Girl has been my place to scribble online since 2007. That’s 14 years of recipes and over 1000 posts to explore.
Eat Like a Girl? It’s simple, we love to eat too. Anything else you’ve heard about women and only eating salad? It’s noise and misogyny.
But, we really love an excellent salad too. Shouldn’t everyone?!
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