What's for Dinner, Barbara-jo?

Dean Johansson's Curried Coconut Rice with Chicken

This may not sound glamourous, but it's our fuel food and it's healthy too. ~Dean


4 chicken thighs and 2 chicken breasts (I like dark meat and my partner, Bryan, likes white.)

freshly ground pepper

1 tablespoon canola oil

2 shallots, finely chopped

1 celery stalk, finely chopped

1 carrot, finely chopped

2 cups brown rice

1 can coconut milk combined with chicken stock to total 4 cups

1-2 teaspoons Madras Curry Powder, to taste

1-2 Thai Red Chillies, optional

1-2 cups small frozen peas

1 red pepper, finely chopped

1 teaspoon fish sauce

1/2 cup cilantro leaves

1/2 cup flat leaf parsley

3 green onions, thinly sliced

1 clove of garlic, finely chopped



Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Pepper the chicken and roast on a sheet pan until done. (Molly Stevens' Roasting book inspired me to cook the chicken this way - 30 minutes should be enough time.)

In a large stock pot on medium, heat canola oil. Sauté the shallots, celery, and carrot until soft. Add the rice and sauté for 3-5 minutes longer. Then, add the coconut milk and chicken stock mixture and curry powder. Stir until the curry powder is completely dissolved, and add chillies, if using.

Place lid on pot and simmer until the rice is done, according to the package directions. Sometimes you need to add a little more water (up to 1/4 cup) if the rice gets too dry. I stir the rice once or twice, but this is just my thing.

Once the rice is cooked, stir in the frozen peas and red pepper, cover and let rest for 5 minutes. Add fish sauce and additional black pepper to taste.

By now, the chicken should be done. Slice it up or leave whole to serve on the rice. (Sliced means you can eat it on the sofa while watching TV and you won't need a knife.)

Garnish with green onions, cilantro, parsley and garlic. You can even add a few chopped basil leaves if you have them around.

Bon Appetit!


Dean Johansson and his partner, Bryan Common, are the proprietors of OptaDerm, and Barbara-jo's French landlords.