Sunday, April 14, 2013

Curried Chicken, Lentils & Rice

In an attempt to eat a healthier diet, I've been trying some new recipes lately. I was seeking lentil recipes when I came across this one. Although the original recipe is missing some information, I made some guesses and have come up with a dish that I like quite a bit.

The combination of spices in this turns out a pretty hot dish. I've played around with it a little (I think the ginger is what really gives it its kick, along with the chili flakes) but have not yet successfully toned it down (I have only made it about 3 times). So, if you don't like spicy, you might want to skip this recipe.

Curried Chicken, Lentils & Rice

2-3 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion (I've used a handful of dehydrated onion)
1 Tbsp. curry powder
1 Tbsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 cup brown lentils
3/4 cup rice (I've used long-grain white rice; the original recipe suggests Basmati, I bet brown rice would be pretty good)
1/2 cup minced carrot (I've used a small handful of dehydrated carrots)
1/4 tsp. red chili flakes
2 cups chicken broth/bouillon
~1 lb. chicken breast, cut to about 1" cubes
3 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 cups chopped fresh spinach leaves (optional; it's good with it, but if you don't have spinach, it's fine without)
  1. Combine olive oil, onion, curry powder, ginger and cumin in a saucepan. Sauté on medium-high heat 4-5 minutes until onions are transparent. 
  2. Add the lentils, rice, carrot, and red chili flakes, stirring to coat with spice mixture. Pour in chicken broth. Turn heat down, cover, and simmer about 15 minutes. Check occasionally to be sure it is not dry; you can add water about 1/4 cup at a time if it looks too dry.
  3. In the meantime, stir-fry chicken cubes in a separate pan with a little bit of oil until cooked through. Season to taste with salt, pepper, perhaps some garlic powder.
  4. Add cooked chicken and lemon juice to saucepan with rice and lentil mixture. Cook another 5-10 minutes, covered, until rice and lentils are done.
  5. Remove from heat; stir in chopped spinach leaves. Cover and let sit 5-10 minutes, until spinach has wilted.
  6. Serve hot. The original recipe calls for serving with a minted yogurt garnish.

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