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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Japanese Chicken Curry

Japanese Curry

The first time I experienced Japanese Chicken Curry was as a freshman at Cornell College in 1984. A bunch of international students I hung out with would cook up various dishes in the International Center kitchen or in one of the dorms. In 1986, as an exchange student to Waseda University in Tokyo, Japan, I lived off the chicken curry with copious amounts of pickled ginger available from the student cafeteria for 90 yen (about a dollar). It was pretty much all I could afford, and luckily I liked it!
The spices in curry are generally anti-inflammatory and may help regulate blood sugars as well.

Over the years I have tried various recipes, but the following is the one everybody in my family likes and asks for over and over. I make a large amount in my crock pot, to have plenty for leftovers and freezing, so you could cut the amount in half if you wanted.


S&B Golden Curry Sauce Mix (I like medium hot, but you can get hot, medium and mild.) 2 packages

Chicken 3 pounds cut into 2 inch-ish squares. (I use organic boneless thighs, but you could use breast meat as well.)

1 large yellow or sweet onion, sliced into about 1-2 cups large pieces.

4-6 potatoes, diced. (I prefer golden or waxy potatoes.)

Carrots 12-16 ounces (I prefer baby carrots, but you can cut whole carrots into 1 inch rounds.)

Mushrooms 1-2 cups sliced (I like a lot of mushrooms, but not really necessary to the recipe.)

5 cups of water

Plug in a large crock pot or alternatively have a large casserole dish or pot available.

When chopping the veggies, I always start with the onion, then the potato, carrots and chicken. As you cut up everything, just throw it in your cooking container.

  You could put the mushrooms in now, but I like to add them midway through cooking, along with the Curry Sauce Mix, because it helps them not be so mushy. Mix the whole thing up and add the 5 cups of water.  Put the lid on.

If you are using a crock pot, set it for 10 hours. If you are using an oven, preheat at 350 degrees and stick your covered dish in for 2-3 hours.  It may take longer, depending on how big you sliced your ingredients.

I put the mushrooms in about hour 5 or 6 of the cooking time, along with the Curry Sauce Mix. You do have the option of adding the Curry Sauce Mix the last hour of cooking, and that's what I would do if I'm baking it in the oven. I make sure that the veggies are tender and the meat is completely cooked before adding the Curry Sauce Mix.

Then I stir it every hour or so until it's done. If it's in the oven, stir every 30 minutes or so.

You can eat it like a stew or serve it over steamed rice or quinoa. It's even better the next day.

My Mom never made this for my brothers, sister and I, but somehow, this curry is like home for me. 

Itadakimasu!  (Let's eat!)