Coconut Chicken Curry

Coconut Chicken Curry

We have a fabulous little hole-in-the-wall Thai place right around the corner from our home.  I’m embarrassed to admit how often I think of their coconut chicken curry.  I want to call up and request just a tall glass of their coconut curry sauce.  Mmmmm Mmm.  I could just drink it! Since I can only tame that temptation for so long, I have been in the kitchen tweaking and playing with this coconut chicken curry recipe for awhile now.  FINALLY I can now daydream about my own coconut curry recipe. One of the most common questions I get about coconut milk is whether I use the canned or carton kind.  Well… it depends on the recipe, and I’ll make sure to specify when I mean the canned coconut milk.  For coconut chicken curry, definitely use the canned kind. Coconut milk is loaded with fat!  Don’t be scared though, my friend, this fat actually helps with weight loss, reduces heart disease, and does many many more wonderful things for you.  When purchasing coconut milk, purchase the full fat and NOT the light.  The only difference is light canned coconut milk has added water which dilutes the coconut meat.  It’s a waste of money, doesn’t taste as great, and this is one cream you can totally indulge in.   I have 2 kids.  I have busy days.  Some days I don’t want to cook.  Am I alone? I’m betting not.  This is now one of my quick, go-to dinners.  I start preparing the dish while the rice is cooking and everything is usually done at the same time.  30 minutes in.  30 minutes out. I have lots...
Garlic Chicken Pasta

Garlic Chicken Pasta

Sometimes I want something light for dinner.  And by light, I mean no heavy sauce but still rockin’ with flavor and satisfying.  I played around with this light olive oil sauce a couple times until my husband actually requested it!  Totally caught me by surprise since my steak-and-potato man usually doesn’t enjoy lighter dishes…. shows how amazingly tasty my garlic chicken pasta recipe turned out. Have you heard about the controversy between real and fake olive oil?  Apparently the Mob or some really scary rich people have been producing olive oil for 20 plus years with less quality oils (canola, sunflower seed, etc.) and claiming it’s 100% olive oil.  They might as well take out their huge wallets and smack us across the face! There are home taste tests, refrigerator tests, and other purity tests which can help you determine whether or not the brand of olive oil you’re using is the real deal.  AND there’s also controversy within the controversy.  So… what do I do with all the conflicting info?  My best research and stick with a brand I feel is legit. Unless you want to spend $54 for a small bottle of the most expensive pure olive oil (I looked it up), here are four brands that have passed the standards established by the International Olive Council.  Since I love my Costco, I usually go with Kirkland. You may have noticed that I’m a big fan of dinners that combine chicken and vegetables like my Chicken Fiesta Soup, Pineapple Chicken Fried Rice, and my Pasta Primivera recipes.  I’m not against side dishes.  Especially if the side dish is asparagus with coconut oil.  However, I love the combination...
Pineapple Chicken Fried Rice

Pineapple Chicken Fried Rice

If your mouth was throwing a party, fresh pineapple, curry powder, and sticky rice would be the superstars on the invite list.  I love EVERYTHING about those three.  Combine them together AND I won’t stop eating until either my stomach bursts or I run out of food.  Whichever comes first. Remember our heart to heart about rice in my Steak Stir-fry recipe?  Let me put my hands on your shoulders just in case I need to shake you in a minute.  Sticky rice is the only way to go.  Not only will it make you look like a master chopstick user, but the quality is MILES above the rest. Just to make sure you don’t get mushy instead of sticky, I suggest buying rice in packaging you can’t read because it’s all in characters.  I really like the Homai brand at Costco.  Here are a couple of Amazon’s top picks.  I’m actually excited to try the Tamanishiki.  It sounds legit!  It’s worth investing in some quality rice. I lived in Taiwan for 18 months over 8 years ago.  Even though time has past, my mouth has a great memory. How could it forget juice running down my chin after gracefully (HA!) biting into a fresh mango? Or the creamy peanut butter that resembled dessert more than a nut butter?  Seriously… why does Taiwan’s taste so much better than ours? BUT, one of my most favorite dishes was pineapple fried rice. Let’s just say I don’t think 99% of Taiwan’s ‘restaurants’ would pass FDA’s safety laws.  You purchase most meals from street food vendors.  The tried and tested method for preventing food contamination was having a fan turned on high with a couple...
Steak Stir Fry

Steak Stir Fry

I’m spoiled.  I mean COMPLETELY spoiled.  Not only have I been able to travel to several countries, but I also have lived in Hong Kong and Taiwan.  For my fellow Americans, we’re being robbed.  Robbed of true authentic Chinese food!  They have luscious fruits and vegetables that are not even found in the States! **Moment for my pity-party**  Okay, let me reel it in a little bit.  I love me some true Chinese food.  It sparks memories of an amazing, unique culture that I’ve grown to love.  That’s why lots of love went into this colorful Steak Stir Fry recipe.  As for my HHFC (Handsome Husband Food Critic), I think I caught him licking his plate when I started cleaning up after dinner. Okay, I can’t hold back my food photography inner-nerd. Tasty Food Photography… what have you done to me?!?!  Look at all the colors!  Bell pepper… red and in your face!  Broccoli… you green crunchy little devil.  Steak… oh you juicy, medium-rare steak… get in my belly!  Not only are there lots of contrasting colors, there are lots of complimenting flavors. When eating a stir fry in Taiwan, I enjoyed the textures and natural flavors of the vegetables accented by a mild sauce.  Don’t worry.  You’ll still get the saltiness you crave from soy sauce, but why insult our vibrant friends… the veggies, I’m talking about the veggies… by smothering them in a sauce that’s more like a gravy? Okay, I think it’s time.  Pull up a chair and let’s discuss rice.  Rice is NOT made equally.  It ranges from grainy to sticky.  If you’ve attempted chopsticks, you know grainy is a no-go.  Sticky.  We...
Easy Sausage, Potato, and Carrot Stew

Easy Sausage, Potato, and Carrot Stew

If you want an easy, quick, last minute dinner idea, stop right here on this easy sausage stew.  I FREQUENTLY make this for dinner.  And when I say frequently… I mean almost every week.  I keep waiting for my family to revolt and scream out protests of having to eat this dinner one. more. time.  BUT there’s not even ONE sign of disappointment when I whip this out on those just-be-happy-the-house-is-still-standing days. It’s pretty easy to always have the ingredients on hand for this sausage stew.  I’m really loving Al Fresco’s chicken sausage right now.  There’s a wide variety of sweet to spicy flavors along with minimal processing.  I find mine for $4 or less at Winco.  I stock up and throw them in the freezer when I get home.  It’s precooked and easy to add into recipes like my Chicken Sausage and Rice Soup. Also, I buy bulk organic carrots and sweet potatoes at Costco.  I’m slowly being converted to all organic produce because I can TASTE a huge difference.  It’s like having garden fresh fruits and vegetables.  Not to mention skipping out on all the nasty chemicals and pesticides.  Don’t believe me?  Do your own taste test.  Since organic carrots are pretty cheap, start by getting some regular fresh carrots and some organic carrots.  Compare the color, quality, and taste.  You’ll quick understand why I’ve become a believer in organic! Okay, I don’t want to keep you any longer.  If you’re making this recipe, you must be short on time.  BUT thank goodness that doesn’t mean you have to be short on a good dinner.  Here are the spices I use. Print Yum...

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