Aromatic ginger, tomato & coconut chicken
I ate this yesterday and enjoyed every bite. For a change I made it using chicken pieces on the bone (instead of bite size chicken pieces) and so then I cooked it for longer. The sauce of tomatoes, chillies, coriander, garlic and ginger also makes a brilliant cook-in sauce for vegetables, white fish, tofu, pre-cooked lamb, or cooked chickpeas. It also freezes well for future fast dinners.
For 2 people
Remember to check out my “larder & shopping” section for unusual ingredients
25g creamed coconut cut up roughly OR ½ cup of thick full-fat tinned coconut milk
3-4cm approx of fresh ginger root, peeled
500g (500ml) bottle of passata (sieved tomatoes – from all supermarkets)
2 green chillies or ¼ teaspoon chilli powder (optional)
1 large handful fresh coriander if you have it
2 large garlic cloves
2 skinless chicken fillets, ideally organic, cut into bite sized chunks
300g organic baby leaf spinach* or chard
Brown basmati rice (optional) plus ground turmeric for cooking.
Version 1 (made with food processor or liquidiser)
1. Peel the garlic, de-seed the chillies (or if you like your dish quite hot leave them in), chop the ginger and coriander roughly and throw the lot into a small food processor. A food processor is preferable to jug liquidiser as if gets the ingredients ground up more quickly.
2. Add enough of the passata to get everything going and blitz until smooth.
3. Pour into a saucepan, add the rest of the passata and the creamed coconut or coconut milk and simmer for a few minutes till the coconut is melted. Stir.
4. Add the chicken pieces and simmer till tender (about 10 mins)
5. Stir in the spinach, turn up the heat and cook until wilted (about 5 mins)
Version 2 (without kitchen gadgets)
1. De-seed and chop the chillies, crush or finely chop the garlic, chop up the creamed coconut and the coriander roughly, finely grate the ginger.
2. Put all of this, with the passata, into a saucepan
3. Simmer for a few mins until the creamed coconut melts, stirring occasionally.
4. Add chicken and simmer until tender (about 10 mins)
5. Stir in the spinach, turn up the heat and cook until wilted (about 5 mins).
*Conventional spinach is one of the most agri-chemical contaminated vegetables you can buy. If you cant get organic spinach then using chard, sliced green leeks, or steamed-til-tender broccoli or steamed green beans are good substitutions.
- Some steamed broccoli florets.
- If you are not wanting to lose weight and are not on a ketogenic or stoneage/paleo diet you could add (for 2 people):
Brown basmati rice (*boil ½ mug brown rice with 1 mug boiling water and ½ teaspoon ground turmeric, covered, till water is absorbed and rice is fluffed up).
Variation: If you prefer to leave your chicken fillets whole, simply cook for longer in the sauce (about 25 minutes) until cooked through, before adding the spinach for the last few minutes.
Why this recipe is good for you:
Processed tomatoes with no additives are a rich source of lycopene, an antioxidant that protects your skin from the damaging effects UV rays – like an edible sunblock! Your body absorbs lycopene better from pureed tomatoes than from whole tomatoes. Ginger, tomatoes, turmeric and chillies all have anti-inflammatory properties that are helpful for a healthy digestive system and good, clear skin. Non organic rice can be heavily contaminated with arsenic but fresh coriander bind to this and other toxic metals in your intestines, helping them be eliminated from your body. Spices like ginger help boost liver function, also to eliminate both natural and man-made toxins. Yet more reasons why herbs and spices are fantastic for you. Using passata packaged in glass jars or bottles means less exposure to toxic bisphenol A (BPA) , which is present in the plastic linings of cartons and tins. Scientific studies link BPA to hormonal imbalances such as low libido, endometriosis, fibroids, and hormone (e.g. breast and prostate cancer) as well as osteoporosis. Limiting your exposure is good news.