Yellow Curry Chicken with Basmati Rice

If you don't go through your kitchen cupboards, you won't really know what you have hidden way at the back.  The old jars, cans & bottles never see the light of the day because they are always pushed back when you buy something new.  Unless you keep a list of what you have at the cupboard door.  But that's already a higher level of being organized.   Well, maybe.  Being a Virgo with prevalent characteristic traits of being a perfectionist & excessively organized, it won't be a surprise if I start making lists of my cupboard contents. 

I found a half-empty bottle of curry powder in my spice drawer the other day and because its time is almost up, I decided it's curry time or never.  Chicken, because that's the only meat I can eat it with.  I have infrequent chicken curry appetencies but when I do have a craving, I like to have a good one.   The last time I cooked this dish was almost a year ago.   I was not satisfied with the recipe I used that I randomly picked out at the internet.  I immediately ditched it.  Maybe because I didn't have all the ingredients so the dish turned out passable but not exceptional.

I never had a reliable chicken curry recipe so I was continuously on the lookout for a good one.  I don't really have a good command of what a good curry dish is so I wouldn't know what is acceptable to a knowledgeable curry eater's palate.  But I was not looking for genuineness, just something I can call delicious and look forward to cooking again.

Then I found Just a Taste's yellow chicken curry recipe. She's a chef and seems to be familiar with curry dishes so I gave my curry craving another shot with her recipe. 

I rarely use strong spices at home because I don't really know how to handle them.  If used correctly, they make the dishes exquisite but if not, the food just comes out a hodgepodge of strong blends.  I have the basic spices at home but they are almost untouched like my curry bottle.  After this recipe, I bought a new one for future chicken curry dishes I am cooking because finally, I found the right one.  

P.S. It was even better when reheated. 

Yellow Curry Chicken with Basmati Rice 

Serves 2
  • 450 grams (1 pound) boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1 (14-oz.) can unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1-1/2 cups green beans, cut into 1-inch segments
  • fresh cilantro, for garnish
  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 1-3/4 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds

Curry Chicken:

  1. Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat in a large saucepan. Place the chicken and ¼ teaspoon salt in the pan and saute until golden brown.
  2. Remove the browned chicken and set it aside.
  3. Coat the pan with the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and reduce the heat to low.
  4. Add the cumin seeds, onion, garlic and ginger. Saute for 3 minutes.
  5. Return the pan to medium heat, add the coconut milk to the saucepan then whisk in the curry powder and remaining ¼ teaspoon salt.
  6. Let the curry simmer and thicken for 3 minutes.
  7. Stir in the peas and green beans then bring the saucepan to a boil.
  8. Reduce the heat to medium, return the browned chicken to the saucepan and let simmer for 5 minutes.
  9. Serve the curry over basmati rice (recipe below) and garnish with fresh cilantro.

Basmati Rice:

  1. Combine the rice and water in a saucepan. Let the rice soak for 20 minutes.
  2. Bring the mixture to a boil then cover.
  3. Reduce heat and let simmer for 15 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes.
  5. Stir in the cumin seeds while fluffing with a fork and serve.