This chicken curry, for my housemates and me, signaled comfort food. Warm, expansive, rich coconut-milk broth sung in the most elegant yet familiar way alongside the hardier ingredients. The vegetarian option, Nasi Goreng (fried rice), is one of Bali’s most widely consumed dishes, Every Southeast Asian country has their version of fried rice, and Indonesia’s take features more spice and tomato paste.
(Chicken curry in coconut milk broth)
1 Whole Chicken
1 bunch Carrots
3-4 lbs. Potatoes
2 knobs Ginger
2 knob Galangal
5 cloves Garlic
4 stalks Lemongrass
1 knob fresh Turmeric (or 2 teaspoon ground)
1 oz. fresh Coriander seeds (or 1 teaspoon ground)
½ teaspoon Sugar
Juice of 1 Lime
5 Kaffir Lime leaves
1 teaspoon White Pepper
1 teaspoon salt
750ml thin (regular) Coconut Milk
250ml thick Coconut Milk (or coconut cream)
Start off by cutting the chicken down into small, 2-4 inch pieces,
toss in a large bowl with lime juice and let rest for 20-30 minutes.
Cut potatoes and carrots into 2-3 inch pieces.
Prepare the curry paste by blending in a food processor or blender the ginger, galangal, garlic, candlenuts, turmeric, coriander, sugar, salt, pepper, 5 shallots, and the inside of 2 stocks lemongrass, until it becomes a smooth paste.
In a large Dutch oven or stock pot, quickly sauté the curry paste in sesame oil for 1-2 minutes. Add the chicken, carrots and potatoes and coat entirely with the curry spices, browning for another minute. Add coconut milk, Kaffir lime leaves, and 2 stocks of lemongrass cut in half. Bring to a boil, then simmer on low heat for 30-45 minutes, using a fork to test the tenderness of the vegetables. Garnish with cilantro and fried shallots and serve with warm rice.
*Vegetarian substitute: Nasi Goreng fried rice (search internet for simple recipe)
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