Monday, January 28, 2008

Dinner Time

I tried a new recipe last week! We don't always have the opportunity to actually sit at the table and eat a real meal all together. Maybe three times a week, if we're lucky... so it's nice to plan ahead and try to make something tasty.

I flipped through Rachel Ray's 365: No Repeats thirty minute meals cookbook and picked out three new recipes to try. I added the necessary ingredients to the shopping list and tried the first on Saturday evening.

Can it really be done in 30 minutes? Let's see.

I started at 5:39 p.m.
The recipe was "Fruited Chicken Curry in a Hurry." Here you see the rice is doing its thing. And I've chopped the chicken. Raw meat... not so photogenic, sorry.
Rachel doesn't really include the chopping time in the recipe. I guess she expects you do to that ahead of time. (???)

While the chicken was browning, I chopped the apple and onion. Here you see the chicken removed from the pan and the apple and onion cooking. Garlic, cardamon and ginger waiting to be added. No measuring... just estimation.

While the apples and onions were cooking, I prepared the toppings. Chopped green onions, mango chutney and toasted coconut. I had to keep a super close-eye on the browning coconut. Toasted almonds waiting to go in that fourth bowl.
Fruity sauce all mixed up -- with curry paste mixed in. Add the chicken back to the pot. Toss in some dates and raisins. (I kept a few pieces of chicken back for the kids. They are not very adventurous eaters, so if it's covered in sauce, it might not get eaten.)
Set the table while the curry is simmering.
I wish I had a mold to make the rice into one of those cool Thai rice pyramids. But, this will do.

Clearly I'm not a food stylist and I'm not sure this looks like any thing special. But, I thought it was super tasty! Some toasty naan or even a little salad would have been good, but the "thirty minutes" doesn't allow time for that.

The kids gobbled up the rice and ate the plain chicken dipped in toasted coconut. I gave them a little big of sauce for dipping, but that got a big "thumbs down." Jeff doesn't like coconut and passed on the chopped onions, so I was the only one who really used the toppings.

How long did it take?
Yep, 45 minutes. Not bad really. I was able to clean up the kitchen as I went along and we have a bit of left-overs that I will probably have for lunch today.


Joanne S said...

thank you for timing this. I've noticed that on Rachel's 30 minute show the food she cuts up and cooks is sometimes NOT the food she serves up at the end. a bit of "switching" going on with the other 5 chef's working on the other side of the camera.

You were very brave to make that curry with so many picky eaters. would you make it again?

Madeline said...

Hi Deborah - thanks for your great post. I'll include it in my weekly roundup, if you don't mind! Rachael says she does include the chopping in the recipe time, but she assumes you are a pretty good chopper. She also chops as she goes instead of chopping everything up and then starting the recipe.

In any event, most of her recipes take me about 30-45 minutes, which is still pretty fast for a healthy meal. Let me know if you blog about any other RR recipes!

Pam said...

Hey Deborah - try a custard cup or bowl of some sort to mold your rice - it works just fine... PP

Karoda said...

I'm digging the apple/onion combo with the chicken. I just purchased a software program to enter all my loose recipes. I love to try new things and it'll be easier to keep my notes on the recipes once I get them entered.

Shelina said...

This looks wonderful, and I am definitely going to have to make it. I'm not familiar with apples (or really any fruit) in Indian dishes, but it may be a location thing.

Shelina said...

Yeah, I was going to say, I use a jello mold for molding my rice. (or if you have any playdough molds, that would be fun, but would take extra cleaning time!) Whatever you have that has a shape would be fine.

Anonymous said...

Persevere with the cooking, the kids and hubby will 'get' the idea soon
Well it looked delicious in the pot simmering, don't know where that vibrant colour went once you had it on the plates.

Anonymous said...

30 minutes- yeah; watch her- Rachel is so hyper. YOu'd have to drink a pot of coffee to keep up with her! Then watch out for your fingers!

Anyway, it looks yummy to me!!


momma helen said...

Yum! It sounds terrific.

For lent this year, I've subscribed to "Saving Dinners" Menu Mailers. Each week, you get 6 dinner recipes and ideas for breakfast & lunch. It will help me get out of my 6-recipe rut.

Thanks for sharing your new recipe.