I don’t think it’s news that turmeric is a health food – but it’s one of the supplements recommended by Dr. Perlmutter in Grain Brain , so I’ve recently been thinking more about this pungent spice.
Turmeric is one of the spices that make up curry powder (among cumin, coriander, ginger) and it’s got a list a mile long (literally – if you write really big and use a lot of paper) of alleged health benefits . It said to support your immune system , it has anti-inflammatory properties and is often recommended to those who suffer from joint and arthritis pain . It’s believed to have a positive effect on cholesterol and contains curcumin, an anti-oxidant that can protect us from damage by free radicals and can potentially slow the signs of aging .
OK, great - I’m convinced. It’s good for us. So let’s eat something curried already, I’m hungry.
I made a coconut curried chicken stew this week that was easy to prepare and even easier to eat. (If you are not a meat eater, fear not my foodie friends, you can easily make this dish with lentils .)
2 large chicken breasts – cooked, diced
1 – 2 Tbsp coconut oil
1 medium onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 bell pepper, cut into thin slices
28 oz can diced tomatoes
1 can coconut milk
1 c chicken broth (or water)
1 tsp curry spices
1 tsp turmeric*
salt to taste
(*Yes, curry powder already has turmeric, go ahead an add a little more!)
Bake chicken as desired – I cooked mine at 350 for about 40 minutes, topped with salt, pepper, garlic powder and thyme before baking.
In a large stock pot or dutch oven, saute garlic, onions and pepper in coconut oil until soft. Stir in spices and continue stir until all vegetables are well coated in spice mixture.
Add tomatoes, coconut milk and chicken broth** and bring to a boil.
(**The last time I made chicken stock, I froze some in a couple of ice cube trays and have loved having a stash of homemade broth in my freezer to easily add to dishes as needed.)
Add diced chicken, bring to a gentle boil again and then reduce to a simmer, allowing soup to cook for another 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally while the flavors blend.
Eat for dinner, then again for breakfast the next day.