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Top 5 "Strangest People" Cities + Country Captain Chicken

Posted Dec 10 2011 12:00am
Good Evening and Happy Sunday!

I am officially blogging on my IPad so we will see how it turns out. So it was recently brought to my attention that I have lived in the Top 3 "strangest people" cities ranked by the annual Travel + Leisure America's Favorite Cities survey.  The Top 5 "Strangest People" Cities are
1) New Orleans, LA
2) Santa Fe, NM
3) Austin, TX
4) Portland, OR 5) San Francisco, CA

I have lived in New Orleans, Austin and now Portland and guess I am going to have to retire in Santa Fe to round out the circle of weirdness. I have always wanted to live in San Francisco but it is just too cost-prohibitive.  I honestly have to say that New Orleans is the strangest place I have lived.  I didn't really think Austin was that weird and Portland can have its moments but for the most part it is just what Travel & Leisure says
Portland, OR, has earned a reputation for quirkiness: independent shops, locally produced cuisine, and—how to be diplomatic?—offbeat locals. You can see it in how they dress, perhaps, or through their love of bicycles, eco-conscious living, and craft beers.

nyhow, I thought that was interesting and we have had a very fun weekend in Portland.  Miss Zoe sang at a Holiday Concert on Hawthorne Street and then we went to the Oregon Ballet Theatre production of the Nutcracker at the Keller Auditorium.  The Nutcracker was amazing and really got me in the holiday spirit.  The kids loved it and we had a really nice time.  Both kids had friends in the production and made it even more special.

 When we got back Steve had made one of my favorite southern dishes- Country Captain Chicken.
 Country Captain Chicken  recipe adapted from Epicurious

2 teaspoons coconut oil
1 onion, chopped
2 carrots peeled, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tablespoons curry powder
Dash of Sriacha Chili Sauce (to taste-- I like it spicy)
1 can crushed tomatoes
1 3/4 cups canned unsalted chicken broth
2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
1/4 cup currants
Brown Rice, Cooked
Chopped fresh cilantro
Toasted unsweetened coconut
Raw Cashews
Heat oil in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrots, celery, bell pepper and garlic and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. Mix in curry and stir 1 minute. Add tomatoes, chicken broth and currants. Reduce heat to low. Cover; simmer 30 minutes to mellow flavors.
Add chicken and simmer until cooked through, about 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle chicken over steamed rice. Garnish with cashews, cilantro, chutney and coconut and serve.

I love this dish.  It is basically a chicken curry but the addition currants are absolutely delicious and add such a nice sweetness to the spicy dish.  You can then customize your dish by adding cashews, chutney and coconut.  Yum!

I have got a crazy week ahead with lots on my to-do list but am looking forward to the lead up to Christmas!

I hope you all are keeping sane during this holiday season and I have another great recipe to try tomorrow so check back.
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