Monday, October 7, 2013

Avocado Yellow Curry with Pork


What's Your Curry?

As I'm sure that Chowbacca!'s brilliant readership already knows, curry is more than a junk food flavor. Like hot sauce and barbecue saucecurry is an English term that straddles a lot of territory. The varied sauces under the curry label are found in countries throughout Asia. Whether it's yellow or red, contains meat or fish, is Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Indian or Thai, a curry helps make a warming and flavorful meal.

It's also a tasty way to use a bounty of foodstuffs that should be used quickly, which is likely how it came about in the first place. The other night, for example, I needed to deal with some red bell and jalapeño peppers as well as some tomatoes from my garden, some mushrooms and avocados I'd purchased, and a big bag of potatoes that had seemed like a good idea at the time. Time was running out.

Avocado in a curry? Yes. Why the hell not? It's a Chowbacca! favorite ingredient and, as I said, curry already covers a lot of territory. If you have a can of coconut milk in your well-stocked pantry, and you should, you are ready to make a curry in a hurry.

The Sauce:

1 Can of Coconut Milk (I also used half cup of Trader Joe's Vanilla Coconut Milk)
1 Haas or Pinkerton avocado (1/2 if using a Reed)
6 Garlic cloves, peeled
3 Tablespoons tomato ketchup or tomato puree
2 Tablespoons hoisin sauce
1 Tablespoon cumin
1 Tablespoon coriander
2 Tablespoons paprika
1 Tablespoon fresh grated ginger
1 Tablespoon sliced pickled turmeric*
3 Tablespoons nutmeg
1 Tablespoon maple syrup or brown sugar

Put it all in a blender or food processor and smooth it out. Put it aside. This is the mild version. If you want more bite just add some red chilies, chili flakes, Cayenne, Chinese mustard powder, hot sauce ... yeah, whatever you like. I scorched this one up with some red chilies and a sliced jalapeño.

Thing that I didn't have on hand that might have made a good curry even better: Lemongrass.
Things that I did have on hand but forgot to add that might have made a good curry even better: Lime juice, fish sauce.

The Stuff:

While you're making that curry you can heat up some country-style "ribs" in the oven at 250 degrees. While you're doing that you can sauté some fresh or rehydrated mushrooms, a half cup of onions, and carrots cut into strips in coconut oil with a large wok or Dutch oven. When everything is soft and the onions are translucent, pull the meat from the oven and cut it into cubes. after moving it around with the sautéed items for a few minutes over medium heat, add the curry and cook the whole lot until the pork reads done on an instant-read thermometer. Just before that time, throw in some kale.

Serve over your choice of rice. I chose jasmine. Enjoy.

*I'll get into more detail in a later post, and powdered or fresh grated turmeric will certainly do, but I've found that turmeric pickled in green tea vinegar has its flavor boosted significantly. I use a similar process to my pickled ginger.