Valentine's Thai Curry

The first and only time I ever made Thai curry was about 2 years ago. I had recently overcome my fear of coconut and fat and was ready to venture out into the wonderful world of coconut milk. I was also new to curry paste, a spice combination I had avoided for concern of tummy upset. I dutifully followed the recipe on the curry paste bottle and filled the house with the amazing aroma of far off lands and sweet coconut. As we sat down to dinner I was so exciting. ""What an exotic cook I've become," I thought to myself. We leaned over our bowls and breathed in the steamy broth. With a knowing glance of anticipation we dove into the curry. The next shared glance was certainly unexpected. Instead of oohing and aahing over the amazing flavors, we ooowww as the curry proceeded to burn our faces off! Yes, in all of my exotic cooking glory I add 2 TABLESPOONS of curry paste rather than 2 teaspoons. How was I supposed to know! I'd never used curry paste before. Needless to say we ate a lot of rice and just a tiny bit of Thai curry that night. When I asked Gray if he wanted to take leftover for lunch he politely said, "UM, no thanks." Not a good sign.

The below recipe is my Thai curry do over. And it is freaking great! I was thankfully re-inspiring by my friend Nora who made this for us on a recent trip to Mammoth. The best thing about this dish is that it comes together very quickly and houses everything you need. A serious one-pot wonder. It's also perfect for a Valentine's dinner when you need something rich, creamy, and slightly indulgent. Actually that could be any night for me. Enjoy!

Valentine's Thai Curry

Serves 4

Feel free to substitute wild caught shrimp for the chicken. You can also make the dish vegan by adding a can of garbanzo beans as the protein source.

1 small red onion, diced 2 teaspoons extra virgin coconut oil 2 garlic cloves, minced 1-2 teaspoons of Thai Kitchen red curry paste, use more if you like it hot! 2 inch piece fresh ginger, cut diagonally into large chunks 2 cups kabocha squash, peeled and cubed 2 cups German butterball potatoes, cut in half or quartered depending on the size 1 can coconut milk, full fat please 1 can water 1 1/2 cups shredded chicken 3 cups Swiss chard, kale, or spinach, washed and chopped 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped 1/4 cup fresh mint, chopped (optional) sea salt to taste

In a medium stock pot, heat the coconut oil and saute the onion until translucent. Add in the garlic, curry paste, ginger, and a teaspoon of salt and cook together for 3 minutes. Be sure to mix the paste into the garlic, ginger, and onion thoroughly. Add in the kabocha squash, potatoes, coconut milk, and water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cooking for 10 minutes, or until the squash and potatoes are tender.

Add in the chicken, green veggies, and a teaspoon of salt and cook for 4-6 minutes. The greens should be wilted and soft. Toss in the cilantro, basil, and mint. Adjust the seasoning to your taste. Ladle into large bowls over brown jasmine rice and enjoy!

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