Sunday, January 06, 2008

Curry-in-a-Hurry Rotisserie Chicken Salad

1 pound rotisserie chicken meat, skinned, boned and diced
3 ribs celery, chopped
1 cup seedless red grapes, halved
1/2 cup shredded carrot, a couple of handfuls
4 scallions, chopped on an angle
1 cup plain yogurt
2 tablespoons curry powder or 2 rounded teaspoons mild curry paste
Salt and pepper
8 ounces mixed baby greens
2 tablespoons mango chutney, found on condiment aisle, plus some to pass at table
1 tablespoon rice wine or white vinegar, eyeball it
3 tablespoons vegetable, canola or safflower oil, eyeball it
1/4 cup (2 ounces) sliced smoked almonds

Combine meat, celery, red grapes, carrot and scallions.Add yogurt and curry to the salad and toss to evenly distribute the curry. Season the salad with salt and pepper, to your taste.

To dress the greens, add salad to a bowl. In a second bowl, combine chutney and vinegar. Whisk in oil. Drizzle dressing over greens and toss.

To assemble, pile dressed greens on a plate. Using an ice cream scoop, place 2 scoops of chicken salad on greens. Garnish with toasted almonds.

Chicken Curry in a Hurry

For spicy rice:
1 teaspoon each coriander seeds, cumin seeds, mustard seeds
2 cups basmati rice, prepared according to package directions

3 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil, 3 turns of the pan
1 1/3 to 1 1/2 pounds chicken breast tenders, diced
2 to 4 cloves garlic, minced, mild to extra spicy
1 to 2 inches fresh ginger root, minced or grated, mild to extra spicy
1 large yellow skinned onion, peeled and chopped
1 can chicken broth, about 2 cups
2 tablespoons curry paste, mild or hot
1/3 to 1/2 cup mincemeat
Coarse salt
2 tablespoons flour

Toppings and garnishes, mix and match:
4 scallions, chopped
1 cup toasted coconut
1/2 cup sliced almonds or Spanish peanuts
1 cup prepared mango chutney
1 /4 cup finely chopped cilantro leaves


Prepare rice to package directions. For spicy rice, toast coriander, cumin and mustard seeds in the bottom of a medium saucepan in 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil. When seeds pop and you can smell seasonings, add water and prepare rice as directed.

Heat 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil in a large, deep nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken and lightly brown. Remove chicken. To same pan, add garlic, ginger and onions and saute together for 3 to 5 minutes. Add flour and cook 1 to 2 minutes. Add chicken broth to the pan and bring to a bubble. Add curry paste and mincemeat and reduce heat to medium low. Add chicken pieces back to the pan. Taste and add a little salt, if you feel it necessary. Simmer curry 5 to 10 minutes.

Assemble your toppings in small dishes. Serve curry in shallow bowls with scoops of rice or spiced Basmati. Garnish with any or all of your toppings.

Curry In A Hurry


1 lb shrimp or boneless, skinless chicke; n breasts
2 1/2 tablespoon oil
1 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon red chili powder or cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 can crushed or whole skinless tomatoes,; chopped (1 lb)
1 teaspoon crushed ginger (opt)
1 salt to taste
1 tablespoon heavy cream (opt)
1/4 cup fresh chopped coriander
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice


If using shrimp, clean and devein. Saute them lightly on both sides until they become pinkish, then set aside. If using chicken, cut the meat into 1" strips and set aside. In a saucepan or wok, heat the oil and "splutter fry" the curry powder and red chili powder and then the garlic rapidly for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, then add the ginger, if desired, and salt; mix well and bring to a boil. Add the chicken or shrimp, and simmer until cooked (3-5 minutes for the shrimp, 6-10 minutes for the chicken). Finally, do the "fimmering" process, simmering on high heat until the oil floats to the top for a minute or so. Remember that overcooking or overspicing can kill the curry. Use the optional cream to tame the curry or adjust the flavor. Garnish with freshly chopped coriander and a squeeze of lemon juice. Serves 2 as a main dish, 3-4 when served with other dishes.