It’s been awhile since I’ve tried a recipe that’s reminiscent of Thai flavors. For awhile there, I was making so many Asian dishes – too many Asian dishes – and I got very tired of garlic, ginger, red chili sauce, rice noodles, and jasmine rice.
With that said – I think that sometimes, its okay to step back: I refuse to ever be a “same ol, same ol” home cook. I would hate for Brett to ever say, “oh, we’re having that AGAIN?” I like to keep my flavors interesting and I’m always on the lookout for a recipe that’s totally new to me. Also, just because I go in search of something different does not necessarily mean something more challenging or complex. While its important to attempt new cooking techniques, let’s be honest: I have a day job. I’m planning a wedding. And I’m not made of money. I need to put a healthy meal on the table for myself and my soon-to-be-husband, almost every night of the week. Finding a meal that is healthy, cost-effective, filling, and TASTES good – is a challenge in and of itself.
First, don’t get stuck in a cooking rut. If you’re sick of cooking Mexican dishes, stop cooking Mexican dishes. Come back to it in a few months.
Second, try to seek out new recipes, but don’t concern yourself too much with worrying that you aren’t pushing your cooking limits. Its okay to keep it to the basics; we’ve all got lives.
Now I suppose that I should probably introduce this recipe – which, for me, meets both criteria above. These red curry chicken noodles are full of flavor, primarily stemming from ginger and coconut. There is also something really cool about the way the chicken is cooked: the “fat” in this recipe is not olive oil or butter, but the coconut milk. I had no idea that coconut milk is LOADED with fat. What a fun and unique way to impart flavor! This recipe is a quick weeknight meal and took no more than 30 minutes. Eat up!
Red Curry Chicken Noodles
3 chicken breasts (boneless/skinless) – cut into 1-inch cubes
1 can coconut milk
2 tsp red curry paste (I used about 2 TBS, we love it)
1 TBS fresh, grated ginger (please don’t use dried!)
1 TBS fresh cilantro (basil is an excellent Thai substitute)
1/4 C sweet thai chili sauce
2 C chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 onion, julienne-cut*
2 bell peppers, julienne-cut
1 C broccoli slaw
salt + pepper to taste
1 pkg rice noodles
*for the record, I am physically incapable of correctly cutting vegetables into julienne. If you’re able to do so without a mandolin, please enlighten me!
1. First, start with the biggest pot that you own, over medium high heat. Open the can of coconut milk and scoop the cream off the top with a spoon. Put into the pot. Add the ginger and curry paste and simmer for 2 minutes.
2. Add the chicken. Cook the chicken through.
3. Add the remaining coconut milk, chili sauce, cilantro, and chicken broth. Bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, heat water to boiling in a second pot.
4. Add all veggies to the first pot. When water is boiling in a second pot, add rice noodles. Watch them closely, as they cook in about 5-6 minutes.
5. Serve: place some rice noodles in a bowl and pour the coconut milk soup over the noodles.