Chicken And Mango Curry

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Dear Jess,

The sun is shining, and the air is cooling. What a wonderful time of year. I have decided it’s my favourite. Don’t get me wrong, I love love love sticky, hot, humid weather. Maybe it’s a result of being born in August. This weather, however, seems strikingly Canadian to me. I feel as if it’s in me. In my blood. You know it will get much colder, and you’re hanging onto the last long days of sunlight. Sometimes still wearing a t-shirt, even if it’s only 10 degrees because the heat of summer is still living inside us. Mmmmm. To top it all off, the kitchen smells of warm, bubbling comfort.

This recipe actually came from a friend of mine. We went to their house for dinner a while back, and she found this recipe for me and my eating restrictions. She was kind enough to pass the recipe on, and I have since made it twice (to raving reviews from the husband!) I left the printed copy at the cottage, but can remember what it said. Unfortunately I can’t remember where in the large world of the Internet it came from. So here goes my version of it!

Chicken and Mango Curry
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 Tbsp ginger, grated
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp ground cumin (or more, depending on your taste)
2 Tbsp curry powder (more or less, depending on your taste)
1 14.5oz can full fat coconut milk
2 mangoes (or 4 cups frozen mango)
The meat of one whole (cooked) chicken
fresh chopped cilantro (optional)

1. Heat oil in saute pan. Add and cook onion and celery for 5 minutes. Add ginger and garlic. Cook for another 2-3 minutes. Add cumin and curry powder. This will soak up lots of the oil. Add more oil if needed.

2. Add coconut milk and half the mango (one mango if using fresh, 2 cups if using frozen) and bring to a boil. Simmer for 15-20 minutes.

3. Transfer into a blender. Blend until smooth. Return to saute pan. Add chicken (chopped) and the remainder of your mango. Bring to boil, and simmer (stirring) for another 10-15 minutes.

I serve this on brown rice with fresh, chopped cilantro.

I hope all is going well with the start of a new school year! I am thinking of you often!

Love,

Highlands Bar & Grill in Birmingham was named America’s most Outstanding Restaurant at the James Beard Foundation Awards in Chicago on Monday night. Highlands pastry chef Dolester Miles was also named best in the country, making the restaurant the runaway winner at the awards. A panel of chefs, restaurateurs, and food journalists gave chef and owner Frank Stitt’s modern Southern restaurant the honors. The other big winner of the night was Seattle’s Edouardo Jordan, whose JuneBaby was named best new restaurant in America; he was also named Best Chef Northwest for his restaurant, Salare. “People always talk about Portland [Oregon] as the Pacific Northwest restaurant city,” said Jordan. “But they’re like the cool kid with a new name every season. Seattle is showing we are an ongoing force.” He doesn’t credit the rise of Amazon.com Inc. for his restaurants’s successes, although owner Jeff Bezos has dined at Salare. “Seattle has always had big companies—Boeing, Microsoft. They come in and eat, but it’s the people in the city who are making it happen. They’re more engaged than anyone gives them credit for.” The James Beard Foundation Awards recognize restaurants, wine programs, chefs, designers, restaurateurs, cookbook authors, and journalists from around the country. The awards, established in 1990, have recognized industry leaders such as Union Square Hospitality Group’s Danny Meyer and Daniel Humm and Will Guidara of Eleven Madison Park. While it may not have been a good year for such famed restaurant cities as New York and San Francisco (which won only two chef and beverage awards, including Best Service at Zuni, and the Best Chef West winner Dominique Crenn), it was a very good year for women. Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune in New York was named Outstanding Chef in the U.S, and Missy Robbins of Lilia in Brooklyn was named Best Chef New York. Forty percent of this year’s nominees were female. Women won many of the major awards, including Caroline Styne, who was named Outstanding Restaurateur for Lucques Group in Los Angeles. Forty percent of the winners of the regional chef awards were women; last year, that number was 30 percent. For the first time, voters were encouraged to consider qualities beyond food, wine, and ambiance, including respect and integrity. This follows accusations of sexual harassment against such past Beard winners as Mario Batali and John Besh.

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