Sunday, January 9, 2011

Braised Chicken in Coconut Sauce

I had made a soup with similar ingredients and so decided to give it a go with chicken thighs.  Boy was I right about deliciousness!  I'm that good.  BTW (that's "by the way" for you old folk), chicken thighs are awesome.  They're cheap.  And really flavourful.  I think I've written this before and no I don't suffer from early memory loss, I just think they're that good.  Maybe I'll build a Facebook group called "BTW, I Love Chicken Thighs".  Meh ... another day.

Ingredients for 2 people:
  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 red chili, minced (including seeds)
  • 1 tsp minced fresh ginger
  • 1 lemongrass stalk
  • 1 tsp Madras curry powder
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • zest of 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • cilantro and lime wedge to garnish
  • salt (always kosher or sea salt) & pepper
  1. Bash the lemongrass stalk with the back of your knife all up and down the stalk on all sides (this will help release its flavour).  Set aside.  
  2. Heat a pan over medium high.  Add the olive oil.  Season the chicken with salt & pepper.  When the pan is hot but not smoking, add the chicken thighs, skin side down.  Let cook until the thighs release easily from the pan and are a deep golden brown.  Turn over and let cook for another 3 minutes.  Remove from the pan and set aside.  Drain all but 1 tbsp of the leftover fat/oil.
  3. In the same pan, turn the head down to medium and add the onion and sauté, scraping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.  Once onion has softened (about 3-4 minutes), add the garlic, ginger, curry powder, lime zest and chili.  Sauté until fragrant.  Add the coconut milk, chicken thighs and lemongrass to the pan.  Season with salt.  Simmer, uncovered, until chicken is cooked through - about 10-15 minutes.  At this point you can turn the heat up and reduce the sauce until there's about 3/4 of a cup left in the pan (if you need to reduce it a lot, remove the chicken so it doesn't overcook).
  4. Serve hot with brown Jasmine rice and top with cilantro and a wedge of lime.  Enjoy!

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