Saturday, January 12, 2013

Japanese Curry Rice Photo Tutorial

Hello! Today I'm going to go through the steps to making Japanese-style curry rice. I make a vegetarian version, using Quorn Chick'n Tenders, but I'll also explain how to make a non-veggie version :) My family adores this quick & easy meal. It only takes about an hour, from the time you start washing veggies, to make.

For the ingredients, you'll need:

1 large onion sliced into slivers (I used half of a ginormous onion)

3-4 cups of potatoes, cut into 1" cubes (I used tiny, colourful potatoes this time)
       I buy organic potatoes, so I only peel them if they are greenish or particularly dirty

~3/4 cup of carrots, cut into 1/2" pieces

~ 1 cup of frozen peas

~ 1 cup of frozen corn

1- 12 oz. (340 gm)  package of Quorn Chick'n Tenders, still frozen
        If you want to do this with meat, you'll need an equivalent amount of beef, pork, or chicken cut  
        into 1" cubes

~ 8 cups of boiling water

1-2 tbsp of canola oil for sautéing

hot, cooked rice, about 3/4- 1 cup per serving

4 squares of curry roux

These are 2 different brands of curry roux that can be found at your local Asian food store, or online, Asian Food Grocer is a good place to start. All brands come in hot, medium, & mild. According to friends from Japan, it's customary to mix 2 different brands to make your own "signature" flavour, but you don't have to.

To start, I fill my teakettle & put it on to boil. Also, since you serve curry rice on rice, start the rice cooking,

Wash & chop the potatoes & carrots. Then I chop the onion.

Next, in a 6-quart-ish saucepan (the largest one before the dutch oven size :),  add the canola oil & turn the heat on high. When the oil is hot (give it about 60 seconds) add the onion.

>If you are working with real meat, add the meat to brown it as soon as the onions are soft. You may want to pour off any fat after the meat is browned. Proceed to veggie version, next step.

Veggie version: after the onions are soft, add the potatoes & carrots. Stir them occasionally to keep from singeing. Cook for 3-4 minutes on high, until everything is hot again.

Add frozen peas & corn next. Stir them in & cook for another 3-4 minutes.

Then add the Quorn tenders & do as above.

Remember that teakettle? It should have boiled by now :)  Add boiling water to the saucepan until it covers the veggie mixture & is about 1 1/2" below the edge of the pot. Cover & allow to come to a full boil (don't let it boil over!).

 Then turn to low & let it simmer for 15 minutes. Don't let it go so low that it doesn't simmer energetically.

Nearly Done!!

Mind the rice, too...

Get your squares of curry roux out. I have 2 squares of Vermont Curry & 2 Squares of Golden Curry here, both mild :) I like to chop them in 4ths again, because they melt faster into the stew that way.

At the end of 15 minutes everything should be tender & edible (make sure meat is cooked through, though). Add the curry roux to the pot & stir well until it's melted into the broth.

The whole thing will thicken magically into a lovely brown sauce with yummies floating in it. I turn it on low & let it simmer slightly for a couple minutes, to meld the flavors.

Then, serve hot over cooked rice. Eat with a spoon! (that's what they do in Japan). This recipe makes 2 meals for my family of 3 (teenaged son & husband & me), plus a couple of lunches for me during the week :)

Meshi agare!!