I think I’m an anomaly of my generation. I still love the lunchbox sandwiches of the 90s. Egg salad, chicken salad, tuna salad? Yes please! (Side note, what makes these “salad?”) I think most of my peers either a) ate so many of these sandwiches in childhood that they refuse to even glance at them now or b) are trying to be more healthy in their lunch choices and therefore avoid mayonnaise-based sandwich stuffers. Either way, I pretty much never see people our age munching on a ‘salad’ sandwich in the breakroom anymore. I’m here to say that they’re missing out. I will say, I do make a few changes from whatever the lunch ladies used to offer. I don’t hate mayonnaise but I don’t want gobs of it smothering my chicken either. I just use enough to loosely bind the other ingredients to each other. I also like sneaking the shredded carrot into the mixture for some extra vegetable. Furthermore, I can make a batch of this fairly quickly and then have it ready for sandwiches for the rest of the week’s lunches! #mealprep 🙄
Curried Chicken Salad
- 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts (~1.5 lb)
- 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp (5 tbsp) mayonnaise
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
- 1 tbsp curry powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 10 turns fresh ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 large carrot, grated
- 1 cup halved red grapes
- Bring a pot of water to a boil. Submerge the chicken breasts and poach at a simmer for 12-15 minutes, until entirely opaque. (Safe chicken internal temp = 165)
- In a small bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, garlic, ginger, curry powder, paprika salt, & pepper.
- Once the chicken is cool enough to handle, chop or shred it. Place in a mixing bowl.
- Add the carrots and mayo mixture into the bowl with the chicken. Stir to combine.
- Lastly, add the grapes and stir everything together.
- Refrigerate until ready to eat.
Makes ~ 3 1/2 – 4 cups
I don’t know about y’all, but I follow an absurd amount of food-related Instagram accounts. Some days I love it and drool over all the gorgeous photos, and some days I’m like, I just want to see my friends’ babies and sunsets!! (When I’m not freaking out like that), one of these delicious feeds that I love is that of the James Beard Foundation. They share amazing photos of their chef dinners and feature other dishes from chefs they love (I’m guessing). I save recipes that strike my fancy (and that I think I might actually be able to recreate). Some I know from a glance are out of my league, but there are plenty I think I can attempt. This was one of them.
Now let me tell you more about this recipe and its source, that I only discovered myself as I was making it today. While I found it featured via James Beard Foundation, it comes from the cookbook The Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook: Artisanal Baking from Around the World, by Jessamyn Waldman Rodriguez. In reading the recipe on JBF’s page, it quotes a description from the cookbook itself, including the line, “Another Lutfunnessa specialty, this curry, called alu-maunsho torkerry in Bangladeshi…” And I’m sitting here like, who is Lutfunnessa…? Isn’t the author’s name Jessamyn…? She doesn’t sound Bangladeshi…? 🤷🤷 Being the incredible internet detective I am, I followed the breadcrumbs to the Hot Bread Kitchen’s website. Turns out Ms. Rodriguez is the founder of the bakery and initiative called Hot Bread Kitchen. Her organization, among other things, is a functioning bakery, that employs immigrant women facing economic insecurity and provides training and education including English skills. While her trainees/employees appear to gain much from this organization, the bakery gains much from them, particularly in the form of multi-ethnic new recipes! Sounds like an awesome setup! Back to, who is Lutfunnessa? Per their website, she is a 2012 graduate of the Bakers In Training program, who now works for Hot Bread Kitchen. I’m taking a wild guess that she’s Bangladeshi, given the description of this recipe.
So thank you Lutfunnessa, Jessamyn, Hot Bread Kitchen, the James Beard Foundation, and Instagram for this great recipe! We followed the original recipe pretty closely, except for our addition of vegetables. I think the corn and the green beans were perfect additions! The flavor of the curry is subtle, but builds as you eat it.
Bangladeshi Beef & Potato Curry
(Adapted from this recipe, as mentioned)
- 4 tbsp oil, divided
- 2lbs chuck beef, cut into ~ 1 inch chunks
- Salt & pepper
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 4 large cloves garlic, minced
- 2 inch piece of ginger, grated
- 1/2 tsp cayenne
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp cardamom
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 3 cups beef or vegetable stock
- 3 yellow potatoes, cut into bite-sized chunks
- 12oz fresh green beans
- 2 ears of corn
- Fresh cilantro
- Heat 2 tbsp of oil to medium-high in a dutch oven.
- Season the beef chunks with salt and pepper. Toss into the dutch oven to brown. Stir a few times to brown on all sides.
- Once browned, remove the beef to the side.
- Add the other 2 tbsp of oil to the dutch oven and lower heat to medium.
- Cook onions, garlic, and ginger in the oil for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they’ve browned.
- Top with all of the spices. Toast for just a minute.
- Now return the beef to the dish and top with the stock. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover with the lid. Cook for 1 hour – check occasionally to ensure the heat isn’t too high and beef is still mostly covered with liquid.
- After an hour is up, add the potatoes, green beans, and corn (removed from ears). Ensure the liquid returns to a simmer. Re-cover and cook for another 30-45 minutes.
- Serve over top rice and with a sprinkle of chopped cilantro.
Makes 8 servings.
I have this Pinterest board called, “Ones I’ve Made and Would Make Again.” Because, as I’m sure you all know, just because you’ve saved it on a Pinterest board, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s worth making even once! [See the entire website PinterestFail.com] But to gain inclusion on this board of mine, I not only had to have made it, but loved it too! One of my absolute favorites on there was this recipe for Thai flavored coconut curry noodles. I say was because the link no longer works! It goes nowhere / I think the original blogger took down his/her blog or that post. I’ve scoured Pinterest, and I can find the original poster’s picture of these noodles, but not the blog itself. (And not to be a tattletale, but I found the original poster’s pictures on a few tumblr accounts without proper credit. Rude.) So, long story short, I tried to recreate the recipe from memory and the Pinterest picture. I didn’t exactly succeed in mimicking it, at least how I remember it, but I ended up with a spicy noodle dish that we definitely enjoyed.
I decided to call them tiger noodles, because I think tigers are big, bold, and fiery – like these noodles. Plus tigers are an endangered species native to Thailand, and this dish is full of Thai flavors. And I like tigers. That’s the main reason.
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 inch fresh ginger, grated
- 2 tbsp Thai red curry paste
- 1 can light coconut milk
- 1/2 cup vegetable or chicken broth
- 10 oz chicken breast, sliced
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tsp fish sauce
- 3/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 red bell peppers, sliced into strips
- 10 baby carrots, sliced
- Wide rice noodles
- 1 lime
- Heat the oil in a large pan, over medium heat.
- Add the garlic and ginger to the pan and saute for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the curry paste and stir to combine well with the oil. Cook for another 2-3 minutes.
- Add the broth to the pan and stir to combine well. Bring to a simmer.
- Now add the chicken to the pan and cook until the chicken has lost its translucence. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
- Now add the coconut milk, broth, soy sauce, fish sauce, and red pepper flakes.
- Bring to a fast simmer and cook like this until the liquid has begun to thicken, ~ 15 minutes.
- Lower the heat to low-medium. Add carrots, bell peppers, and the chicken to the pan. Cover and cook another 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to a boil. Remove from heat and submerge the noodles in the hot water for 5-10 minutes. Then drain and set aside.
- Add the noodles, a sprinkle of chopped cilantro, and a healthy squeeze of lime into the pan and stir briefly. Serve immediately. Top your bowl with more cilantro and/or lime if you’d like.
Makes 4 servings.
I love pretty much any and all Asian foods and flavors. Thai-style curries are among my favorites. But disclaimer… I threw together this recipe myself. And as an average American with European mutt ancestry, I make no claims about authenticity of any sort.
But with that being said, I think this turned out really well. I think the sweet and spicy flavors balanced each other out nicely. Don’t be put off by the thought of fruit and vegetables together in a curry. It works, I promise.
Selim’s Take: Since I had absolutely no part in this recipe, and since Ally wasn’t following any recipe, I may or may not have been slightly nervous as to the finished product. When she makes something by herself, she kicks me out of the kitchen completely; I’m not even allowed to get something to drink or a snack out of the refrigerator. Ally likes to keep the ingredients a secret, because I’m really good at figuring out what she’s making just by knowing a few of the ingredients. My nose was in for a treat this time… the house smelled delicious from all the aromatic garlic, onions, curry paste, paprika, and mango. At one point, I thought I smelled maple syrup, but it was just the coconut and mango mix cooking down. Like I said, the smells coming from the kitchen filled the house, sweet and spicy, definitely building the hype for this concoction. The finished product didn’t disappoint either. I could definitely taste all the flavors, sweetness of the mango, corn, and coconut milk, the spicy curry, and a touch of umami from the fish sauce. I would like to add that you could throw in a bit of chicken, tofu, or some beans to the dish for a little extra protein.
Mango Coconut Veggie Curry
- 2 tsp oil (we like to cook with safflower oil, but use whatever you prefer)
- 1 medium white onion, diced
- 3 large cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1/2 of a jalapeno, finely chopped
- 2 ripe mangoes
- 1 can of coconut milk
- 3 tbsp red Thai curry paste
- 1/4 cup of vegetable stock
- 1 tsp paprika
- 20 baby carrots, sliced
- 3 ears of corn, kernels sliced off
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp fish sauce
- 1 cup of rice
- Lime wedges
- Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the onions and garlic. Allow to saute for 5+ minutes. Then add the jalapeno and saute another 2-3 minutes.
- Meanwhile, slice mango flesh away from the pit. Using an immersion blender (or regular blender), combine the coconut milk and mango. Blend until the combo is smooth.
- Once the onions and garlic have softened and become fragrant, add the curry paste to the pan. Stir so the paste combines with the oil. Allow to continue to saute another 5 minutes.
- Next, add the mango-coconut mixture, stock, paprika, soy sauce, and fish sauce to the pan. Stir to combine. Allow to come to a soft simmer.
- Once sauce is simmering, add the carrots. Continue at a simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then add the corn and cook for another 10 minutes. Meanwhile, cook rice per directions.
- Serve rice in bowl, cover with vegetables and sauce, and squeeze a lime wedge over top.
Makes 4 large servings.