By Kristen Mercure
It’s the first day of summer and you know what that means? A new, mouthwatering recipe from the mind of Amber of Bluebonnets & Brownies. She’s brought us two scrumptious coffee-strewn desserts and now… now she helps us answer the age-old question: What’s for dinner?
Last time, I went over the top sweet with Wild Mountain Blueberry® Coffee Pound Cake. Now, there’s nothing in the world wrong with sweet, delicious baked goods – but when you’re talking about Fair Trade Island Coconut® Coffee, a sweet dessert just seemed a little too obvious to me.
I decided I should challenge myself, and you, by turning Island Coconut into a savory dish. Island Coconut is such a fun coffee flavor. We enjoy it around here as the perfect finish to a meal, practically dessert in a coffee cup. So turning it into a dinner ingredient just upped the ante on one of my favorite Green Mountain Coffee flavors.
Folks, I like to think just maybe I hit this one out of the proverbial ballpark. Whether you’ve ever had Indian food before or not, I implore you to try making this dish. The majority of the ingredients will be familiar to you, and once you’ve added curry powder to your spice cabinet, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.
Island Coconut Chicken Curry is best served over Basmati or Long Grain white rice, with a side of Naan bread. Naan is a pillowy flat bread native to Indian cuisine. You can usually find it in your grocer’s bakery area, but if you can’t, feel free to substitute some freshly made tortillas. I certainly won’t tell!
You can make this curry as directed in a dutch oven or large saute pan, or use a slow cooker for an incredibly easy weeknight dinner.
In the recipe below, I’ve linked to where you can find the two curry powders I used. You should also be able to find a variety of curry powders in your local spice store, and at least one variety is usually carried at major grocery chains. You’re welcome to change up the style of curry powders if you like more heat. The two I used are fairly mild, and work incredibly well with coconut, which, after all, is the star of this show.
Island Coconut Chicken Curry
1 medium onion (about 1/2 cup), diced
1 large red pepper (about 3/4 cup), diced
4-6 cloves of garlic
1 6 oz can of tomato paste
4 oz half and half or plain yogurt (I used half and half)
6 oz freshly brewed, hot Green Mountain Island Coconut coffee (I used the smallest setting on my Keurig)
1 tbsp maharajah curry powder
2 tbsp rogan josh curry powder
1/2 tsp red chili flakes (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp olive or canola oil
1 1/2 lbs. skinless chicken breast or thighs, diced into 1″ cubes
1 cup frozen diced okra
fresh cilantro for garnish
Place onion, red pepper, garlic, tomato paste, coffee, cream or yogurt, both curry powders, chili flakes, salt and pepper in a food processor or blender. Pulse to combine until you have a semi-smooth sauce.
In a large frying pan or dutch oven, heat oil on high. Add chicken pieces and season with salt and pepper to taste. Allow to brown for 10-15 minutes, stirring often.
Add okra pieces to the pan, and cover with curry sauce. Allow to simmer, covered, on low to medium heat for 30-40 minutes, giving the flavors time to combine. Stir every 10 minutes or so.
If making in a slow cooker, cook on low for 6-8 hours or 4 hours on high.
Serve over rice, and garnish with fresh cilantro.