Cooked with onions, coconut milk, and spices
When hunger and inspiration come together, delicious dishes appear. That was the case for me today. I had some chicken thighs, kale, and onions in the fridge, along with coconut milk. Added some spices: ginger powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, salt, pepper, and lemongrass, and put them all in a slow cooker. Left it on high for about four hours and let the magic happened. The sweet smell of coconut milk mixed onions, lemongrass, and kale made the chicken so aromatic. The meat was so tender and melted in the mouth. And the kale tasted so rich for being cooked with all of the spices and juices from the chicken. I separated the chicken and kale at the end. I also wanted to add some golden color on the chicken so I put it in the oven to broil for five minutes (this last part is completely optional).
Recently, a friend had recommended a slow cooker to me. She said that it has freed her from standing for a long time in front of the stove while cooking, which allowed her to tend to other things. Curiosity and the need to tend to other things (while still wanting to cook too), drove me to Target to get a small slow cooker :D. The results have been promising. So I will keep on trying different things in my slow cooker.
Here’s how I did the two dishes:
- 6 chicken thighs
- 3 small onions (chopped)
- 1 small cut of lemongrass
- 1 cup of coconut milk
- 1 bunch of kale (only used the leaves, no stem)
- 1 teaspoon of ginger powder
- 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
- 1 tablespoon of coriander powder
- Placed the chicken in the slow cooker pot
- Poured the coconut milk
- Added the onion, lemongrass, and spices
- Mix them by hands
- Put kale on the top and covered the pot
- Set the cooker on high and left it for about four hours (I mixed everything again while it was cooking).
- Once they were all done cooking, I separated the chicken and kale
- Placed the chicken on an oven-safe plate and let them broil in the oven for five minutes. I wanted that roasting golden color on the chicken (optional)
- Placed the kale on a deep dishware so I could serve a little bit of the broth with it
- I used the remaining broth to cook tofu. Just put the broth in a pot on a stove, medium heat, added firm tofu that I diced, let it simmer for a bit and ta…da…another dish!
Wishing all of you a good week!
Eat well and be well
(My version of gulai sayur. Origin: Indonesia)
Here is my version of gulai, which refers to the flavorful yellow broth made of turmeric, chili peppers, garlic, shallot, and coconut milk. It makes such a wonderful vegetable stew. In fact, I have written a couple of versions of this recipe before, titled Chayote Squash in Spicy Broth and Spicy Kale. Today, I’d like to adjust it a bit to show how easy and versatile it could be.
When summer comes to an end, it usually yield tons of produce. Like many of you, I love going to farmers market to get those goodies. Maybe like some of you, I tend to get too many things. Just like the other day, I got a variety of peppers and tons of shallots and garlic—the three key ingredients in Indonesian cooking and in this vegetable stew recipe. I also had a couple of Chayote squash and two handful of shiitake mushroom in the fridge. So, here’s what I did with them:
Prepared the vegetables:
- Peeled, cored, and sliced the Chayote squash into long and thin cuts. Then I soaked the cuts in a bowl of water mixed with salt for about 30 minutes to get rid of the sap. Could be substituted with summer squash/zucchini/ bell pepper (see more vegetable options on the bottom of the page)
- Remove the shiitake stems and roughly chopped the mushroom
Prepared the gulai broth:
List of ingredients:
- 4 shallots
- 4 garlic
- 3 hot peppers (red/orange color)
- 3 sweet peppers (red/orange color)
- 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder
- Salt to taste
- 2-3 cups of water
- 1/2 can of light coconut milk
- 1/2 inch of sliced galangal root (or 1 lemongrass) to add lemony aroma to the stew. Could be substituted with lemon zest (from one lemon).
- Chopped shallots, garlic, hot peppers, and sweet peppers in a food processor (or blender)
- Added turmeric powder and a little bit of salt to the mixture
- Sweat it in a heated pot with a tablespoon of vegetable oil, to release the moisture
- Added water and galangal root, let it simmer
- Added coconut milk, stirred
- Once the broth simmered for the second time, I added the squash and mushroom
- Let them stew for about five minutes or until the broth simmered for the third time
- Removed galangal root before serving
At dinner time, my guy had a good point. He said that the stew’s contents could vary. We could have different types of vegetables with (or without) mushroom or even with tofu/tempeh/some seafood in it. Aha! That comment gave me an idea. I listed several produce that would taste great in this vegetable stew recipe:
Choose one vegetable or do a pairing of a vegetable with either mushroom/one of the seafood selections/tofu/tempeh from the following list: (I’d combine up to two things to avoid stew overcrowd)
- Summer squash
- Bell peppers
- String beans
For these greens, I prefer to have it just by itself in the stew, not in a combination.
- Swiss Chard
- Collard Green
- (I like using) Shiitake mushroom
- Smoked salmon (I’d cut it into small square and add into the stew closer to the end of cooking, since it is already cooked)
- Shrimp (cook together with the vegetable of choice in the simmering broth until shrimp is fully cooked, about 5 minutes)
Soy-based protein goodies:
- Tofu (extra firm and cut into small square. Cook together with the vegetable of choice in the simmering broth for about 5 minutes)
- Tempeh (cut into small square and cook together with the vegetable of choice in the simmering broth for about 5-10 minutes)
What do you think? Anything else we could try? I’ll add to the list if I could think of more.
Thanks for stopping by!
This entry was originally titled Kale Braised in Coconut Milk and was published back on January 26, 2012. Since then I have tweaked the recipe and arrived at a point where I could say, “This is even better!” So here it is, dear readers. Let’s turn the hardy green leaves into a tender and flavorful dish.
Almost a decade ago, a good friend introduced me to kale. Originally, we wanted to cook braised cassava leaves in spices and coconut milk (gulai daun singkong), a native dish to the West Sumatrans, but could not find the vegetable in Michigan. My friend believed Kale’s texture and taste would work for the dish we wanted to make. And OH WOW, did it work great! Since then on this super vegetable has been one of my regular side dish menus.
Both Jeff and I love this dish. It is spicy but yet there’s also a little sweetness that comes from the mixture of red bell pepper, shallots, and coconut milk.
Here’s a list of things we will need:
- 2 bundle of kale (remove the stem, wash, and chop the leaves)
- 4 shallots (finely chopped)
- 4 garlic (chopped)
- 1 red bell pepper
- 10 hot finger peppers (finely chopped)
- Light coconut milk (one can)
- One cup of water
Chicken stock (use half a cup)
- One inch cut of galangal root (for aroma)
- A pinch of turmeric powder
- 1 tablespoon of canola oil
- Heat up the canola oil in a medium pot
- In a food processor, chop and mix garlic, shallots, and all peppers.
Add shallots and garlic into the pot and let them turn to light brown
- Sweat the garlic, shallots, and peppers mix in the medium pot for 2 minutes
- Add salt and turmeric powder
- Add water and bring to boil
Mix the leaves with shallots and garlic
- Add coconut milk, stir, and bring to boil one more time
chicken stock and peppers. Cover the pot with its lid and let the dish boil
- Add kale, bring to boil, and then remove pot from the heat immediately (to avoid overcooking the vegetable)
Add coconut milk, stir and mix well, and let it cook for another 20 minutes until the vegetable becomes tender
Uncover the pot to reduce the liquid for no more than 2 minutes
Add salt to taste
Great with rice and a grilled chicken or a beef dish.
Hope you like it!
So I got this Kale recipe from Cheeky Chicago this morning. Looks super delicious. Now, I am neither a vegan nor a vegetarian but I like vegetables. Especially the ones cooked or prepared in a bold flavors. With this recipe, I’d add grilled trout and make the kale dish (click on the link below) as a side.
Vegan Food: Kale Stuffed Mushrooms | Cheeky Chicago.
Here’s how I’d prepare my grilled trout:
-Get a couple of fresh trout fillets
-(In a large bowl) Pour a little bit of apple vinegar, enough to coat the fillets on both sides. Lemon juice works fine too.
-Mix a little bit of salt and (1 teaspoon of) ginger powder, chili powder, coriander powder, and chopped garlic.
-Rub the spices to the the vinegar-coated fillets
-Drizzle with a little bit (1 tablespoon) of olive oil
-Let them sit for 15 minutes
-Wipe the surface of the grill with olive oil
-Heat up the grill
-Grill each side of the fillet for 4 minutes (total 8 minutes)
-Leave the fish alone and flip only when the surface facing you changes color