Zen AF: Thai Coconut Curry with Stuffed Eggplant
My wife and I have this ongoing, never ending joke whenever we're ordering takeout and she asks what I have a taste for. My response is always the same, "You know what the f**k I want." Ten times out ten, if I have it my way we're eating Thai food (or my second runner up - Chinese). I can't explain it and I have no idea where it comes from, but all things Asian is my favorite cuisine. I'm talking the entire continent. If my hands aren't preparing it, I almost always crave ramen from Jinya, sushi from Katsuya (the one in Studio City, NOT LA Live) or Indian at Badmaash. Ordering in, I want the aforementioned. Always. Thankfully, she usually obliges.
This week marks the first full one of my journey back to good health, eating clean and 2 pants sizes ago. While my recipes here may not always reflect what I'm eating myself, today is definitely an example of the type of Paleo dishes I'll be preparing. It's all about balance, you know?
Funny enough, this dish includes some of my wife's favorite and least favorite flavors in the form of curry and eggplant, respectfully. I left the eggplant out of hers needless to say.
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breast
- 2 large eggplant
- 2 medium carrots
- 1 large zucchini squash
- 1 teaspoon of fish sauce
- coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon of fresh ginger
- juice of 1 lime
- half a yellow onion (diced)
- 4 garlic cloves (minced)
- 2 teaspoons of red thai curry paste
- 2 cans of coconut milk
- curry powder
- 2 cups of chicken stock
- 1 bunch of cilantro (chopped)
- 1 green onion spear (sliced)
- 2 red thai chilies (sliced)
- Season chicken breasts thoroughly with salt, pepper and curry powder. In a small to medium sized pan over high heat, coat with a tablespoon of coconut oil and sear chicken until golden brown. Flip and cover chicken, reducing the heat to low and allow it to cook with the lid on for 6-8 minutes until its just undercooked. Allow it to rest on a cutting board for 5 minutes. Slice into 1/3" pieces and set to the side.
- Cut eggplant into 1/3" slices lengthwise. Place the slices in a strainer and sprinkle them with salt. Let them drain and sit for 10 minutes. Remove from the strainer and brush with coconut oil. Lined them up on a baking sheet with a rack. Roast them in the oven on 400 for 20 minutes until they've softened and pliable. Remove from the oven.
- Cut zucchini and carrots into 1/4" x 3" slices.
- Take 1-2 slices of chicken, zucchini and carrots and roll them up in the eggplant. Secure with toothpicks that have been soaked in water for 5 minutes.
- In a large pan, sauté garlic, onions and ginger until softened in coconut oil. Then add lime juice, coconut milk, fish sauce and chicken stock and bring to a boil. Bring it down to a simmer and allow it to cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add stuffed eggplant and chopped cilantro to soup mixture and continue to simmer for an additional 10 minutes, flipping each piece after 5 minutes.
- Ladle soup into a bowl and add stuffed eggplant as desired.
- Garnish with sliced scallions and red Thai chilies.
- Enjoy! Slurp as loud as you want.