Tropical Turmeric Stir Fry
Back in my hometown there is a little Thai restaurant that used to be the go-to girl’s night spot for my best friends and me. It was small and quiet, decorated in a chic modern style and served delicious Thai food. We would go there to catch up, chat, complete a day of hanging out, or prepare for a night out on the town. My favorite dish there was called the tropical rice wok, it was a delicious dish that combined the savory tastes of chicken, onions and curry with the sweet surprise of raisins and pineapple. I could eat the whole thing without batting an eyelash and I was proud of it: it was delicious. However, my days of eating large quantities of rice and curry are behind me now, as I later realized that both foods were contributing to my autoimmune condition. Recently though, I was thinking about that restaurant and I decided to try and make a grain and nightshade free version that would satisfy my craving. This dish hit the spot!
Turmeric is the base spice in curry and it is highly anti-inflammatory in nature. It is turmeric that gives curry its yellow color and it has been used in India for thousands of years to not only season food, but also provide healing. Turmeric contains substances called curcuminoids, the most important of which is curcumin. Studies on curcumin have shown that is an effective and strong anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant and it even rivals some anti-inflammatory drugs. Curcumin blocks NF-kB, a molecule that travels into the nuclei of cells and turns on genes related to inflammation. (2)
These anti-inflammatory properties make it a great staple spice for anyone battling inflammation in any form, or anyone who just wants to eat delicious food! Curry also contains other spices such as peppers which can be a problem for some people, but turmeric by itself still lends the delightful savory flavor of curry just without the spiciness.
It is amazing how often food can trigger an emotional response in us and eating this dish really took me back to those fun times with my friends. What foods trigger fun memories for you? Let me know in the comments.
1 Three inch piece of ginger
½ white onion
4 cloves of garlic
1 TBS coconut oil or solid cooking fat
3 carrots peeled and sliced
1 cup of chopped broccoli florets
2-3 chicken breasts cooked and shredded
¼ cup of raisins
1 cup of diced pineapple
¼ cup of coconut cream (The fat from the top of a cold can of coconut milk)
2 TBS of turmeric
salt to taste
In a food processor, combine peeled ginger, onion and garlic. In a large pan sauté the garlic, onion and ginger in your coconut oil on medium heat until the onion becomes tender and the ginger is fragrant. Then, add your sliced carrots, cover, and cook on medium heat for 5-7 minutes. When the carrots have become slightly tender, add in your broccoli and continue to cook. When the carrots and broccoli are both cooked and tender add in your cooked chicken, raisins and pineapple. In a small bowl combine your coconut cream and turmeric and stir well. Add this sauce to your stir-fry, add salt to taste and cook for another two minutes. Serve immediately and enjoy!