Thursday, April 11, 2013

Clean Eating Coconut Almond Curry

Makes about 6 servings, 1 1/2 cups each
One of the best things about living in Japan (besides the fact that you can get a can of hot milk tea from a vending machine!) is that there is delicious curry EVERYWHERE. I am hoping to go to a local grocery store with my new friend, Hiromi, (Hi, Hiromi!) soon so that she can show me what the different kinds of curry pastes and bottles of sauces are. But for now I made this super yummy version using regular curry powder. The coconut and almond butter went so well together and made the sauce silky smooth. I loved the slight sweetness of the red pepper and pineapple paired with the slight saltiness of the soy sauce. You could easily make this a vegetarian meal by substituting vegetable broth for the chicken broth and using firm tofu, mushrooms, cauliflower, or even potatoes in place of the chicken.

I deliberately used almond butter because Liadan isn't old enough to eat peanut butter yet and I wanted her to be able to try it, but I think it would be scrumptious with peanut butter as well. The boys were skeptical at first when they saw their bowls but in the end they both licked their plates clean. The baby inhaled hers while making lots of happy lip-smacking noises and trying to throw herself out of the highchair and onto the table to get closer to the bowl. Matt finished two bowls in record time even though he was trying to eat it with chopsticks. I'd say this was a success :) 

At first glance it may seem like this dish is high in saturated fat but it's mainly from the coconut milk which is, believe it or not, good for you. Read more about it HERE.

  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into bite sized pieces, about 1 lb
  • 2 Tbsp tapioca starch or arrowroot powder (can use cornstarch but it won't be "Clean")
  • 2 cups low sodium, fat free chicken broth, divided (can use vegetable broth)
  • 1 can coconut milk (I used a regular one but you could use low fat as well)
  • 1/4 cup almond butter (can use peanut butter or any other kind of nut butter or leave this out completely for a nut-free dish)
  • 2 tsp curry powder or 2 Tbsp curry paste (I used yellow curry powder)
  • 2 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce 
  • 1 tsp ground ginger 
  • 1/4 tsp salt 
  • 2 Tbsp sucanat (could use honey or brown sugar)
  • 3 carrots cut into matchsticks
  • 4 cups broccoli florets 
  • 1 cup pineapple chunks
  • Cilantro (or basil) and slivered almonds (or peanuts) for garnish
ONE: In a large skillet, wok, or saucepan lightly misted with cooking spray, cook onion, pepper, garlic, and chicken over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through and the onions are translucent, about 8 minutes.

TWO: In a medium bowl (or 4-cup measuring cup!), mix the tapioca starch/arrowroot powder with enough of the chicken broth to make a thin liquid (called a slurry). Add the rest of the broth, coconut milk, almond butter, curry, soy sauce, ginger, salt and sucanat. Stir well to combine.

THREE: Once the chicken is cooked through, dump in the carrots, broccoli, pineapple, and curry sauce and mix well. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to medium and let cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until the carrots are tender and the sauce has thickened,

Garnish with cilantro and nuts. We ate ours by itself but it would go nicely with brown rice or some whole grain naan. Freeze in 1 1/2 cup portions using the medium/large portions method to feed your freezer stash.

Nutrition Info:
Per 1 1/2 cup serving without garnishes- 490 Calories (279 Calories from Fat), 31g Total Fat, 19g Saturated Fat, 67mg Cholesterol, 603mg Sodium, 27g Total Carbs, 6g Dietary Fiber, 14g Sugars, 30g Protein, 125% DV Vit A, 180% DV Vit C, 8% DV Calcium, 22% DV Iron

Saute onion, peppers, garlic, and chicken until chicken is cooked through and veggies are soft
Combine all of the sauce ingredients 
Chop up your carrots...or carrot if you are in Japan since they are ENORMOUS here!
 That's an 8 inch chef knife it is sitting next to. Is it weird that, every time I buy carrots here,
I think about how Bugs Bunny would have loved Japan? ;) 
Mix up your sauce
Dump the broccoli, carrots, and pineapple into the pan on top of the chicken mixture
Add in the sauce mixture
Stir well. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, and cook uncovered about 10 minutes or until veggies are tender crisp and sauce has thickened.
Matt had his with peanuts and no cilantro. Mine was prettier ;)


  1. I loved it! I didn't have broccoli, so I used spinach. Karis ate more veggies than normal. Hooray and thanks!

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