Until recently, I was convinced that the weather here in Colorado was bipolar. One day it would be beautiful, warm, with the sun shining and the next it would be cloudy, dreary and a balmy 60 degrees outside. Heck it snowed at the end of April and Pike’s Peak still has a thick layer of snow on the peaks of the mountain!
It was getting a little frustrating going through the ups and downs of this weather while trying to enjoy spring at the same time. All I wanted to do was grill outdoors and start making lighter meals that were spring-themed, but instead I was being forced to dive back into my “winter” recipes to find meals that would be hearty and keep me warm.
After feeling as though I had exhausted most of my favorite soup and stew options, and wanting to stay away from heavy meals like pork loins, I decided to get a little creative with one my meals and let my ethnic food juices begin to flow! Immediately I was drawn to the idea of curry. Why curry you might ask? It’s hearty but healthy having a base of many vegetables with the option to add tofu or chicken for protein. The sauce base is coconut milk so it doesn’t get too thick like a stew does, and best of all, it was a warm dish that would help keep me warm on a dreary spring night.
While curry can be made on the stove top, I opted to make mine in the crock-pot. Doing this really allowed for all the flavors to simmer together throughout the day, which very much enhanced the flavor. In addition, it made it easier for my long nights so that I didn’t have to cook after work but could come home and just enjoy the food.
The recipe I used for my Crock-pot Thai Chicken Curry was very simple and was a one-pot wonder. I literally threw everything into a crock-pot on a Sunday night to marinate then put it on low for about 8 hours Monday morning while I went to work. For the meat, I recommend using boneless skinless chicken thighs. I feel that they hold up better in the crock-pot for that long and hold the flavor better. I don’t like to eat chicken thighs all the time, so I went up to my butcher counter and got just the amount of chicken thighs that I needed for the recipe, less waste and more cost efficient.
The following is the recipe I used:
1- 14-ounce can coconut milk, plus 1 can of water
2- 4 tablespoons Thai Red curry paste
1- tablespoon soy sauce
1- tablespoon brown sugar
2- tablespoons minced ginger
2- teaspoons fish sauce
4- cloves garlic
1lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into 2-3 pieces
2 zucchini cropped up
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 small head cauliflower chopped
1-2 chili peppers
1 large bunch of kale
1). Place all ingredients except the kale into the crock-pot and stir together well. I cooked mine on low for 8 hours.
2). Right before you eat, prepare your jasmine rice or quinoa; turn crock-pot to warm and stir in kale and let sit until you are prepared to eat.
3). Top with cilantro, lime, and if you like chili peppers.
I served my curry over a small bowl of quinoa and dressed it with cilantro, limejuice and a mild red pepper.
This meal was the perfect meal to make. I had enough to eat for a few days, was full of veggies and protein so it got me full without weighing me down and being too hardy. The next time you are looking for a meal that will fill you up while still being light, try making this curry. It’s got great flavor, packed with protein and veggies, and it’s just fun to mix it up for some ethnic cooking!