My love for seasonal ingredients comes from the nostalgia of bringing them into my cooking at the right moments. The candied earthy smell of baking apples, for instance, triggers an olfactory memory of the autumn farm stands and pick-your-own farms I enjoyed visiting as a child. While for many of us, apple time brings visions of pie, I favor introducing the crisp tartness in a curry recipe, creating a uniquely warming and pleasantly spicy dinner perfect for chilly autumn nights – not to mention the aromas of garam masala, cinnamon, and paprika simmering in the slow cooker all day is sure to foster some new apple-based traditions.
• 1 13.5oz can unsweetened coconut milk
• 2 tsp curry powder
• 2 tsp red curry paste
• 1/2 tsp onion powder
• 1 1/2 tsp ginger powder
• 1/2 tsp turmeric
• 1/2 tsp paprika
• 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
• 1/4 tsp cinnamon
• 1/2 tsp garam masala
• 3 Tbsp soy sauce
• 2 large garlic cloves, minced
• 2 chicken breasts, cut into 1” thick strips
• 3 medium apples, variety of your choice
• 2 Tbsp cornstarch
• Vegetables of choice (suggested: broccoli, red and
orange bell peppers, and white onion, chopped)
• Salt and black pepper to taste
• 2 cups cooked barley
1. Set slow cooker to high. Pour in the unsweetened coconut milk and chicken broth. Note that the coconut milk will appear chunky until it warms.
2. Peel the apples and chop into ½-inch pieces; add to the slow cooker.
3. Add the curry powder, turmeric, garam masala, paprika, onion powder, ginger powder, and cinnamon to the slow cooker. Toss in the minced garlic, curry paste, and soy sauce, and stir well to combine.
4. Place the chicken strips in the slow cooker. With the lid on, cook on high for 3-5 hours, or on low for 7-8 hours.
5. About 45 minutes before the curry is ready, preheat the oven to 450°F. Toss the veggies with olive oil and salt, and spread over a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake without flipping for 30 minutes to allow a few ends to char. Remove from the oven and set aside.
6. Fifteen minutes before the curry is finished cooking, scoop 6 tablespoons of the curry liquid into a small bowl. Whisk it together with cornstarch until there are no clumps, then return it to the slow cooker. Stir to combine, place the lid back on and cook for an additional 15 minutes to thicken the sauce.
7. Pour the apple chicken curry over the cooked barley, and spoon the charred veggies over top. Enjoy!
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