Monday. Back to work, back to reality. It was particularly hard to get going at work this morning since I had such a nice weekend. The hubby and I took the dog to the dog park, had dinner with some friends Saturday night and Sunday we went to Teatro ZinZanni in San Francisco. It's a cabaret/vaudeville/improve/circus acrobatics dinner show. SO much fun! We laughed our asses off for 3 hours straight. If you live in the SF Bay Area and haven't been yet, you should go. It's a guaranteed fun time. I was a little nervous about what to expect, since it had some rough reviews on Yelp, but we loved it. The biggest complaint on Yelp was about the food. We thought it was good. Definitely not great, but not bad either. It was standard banquet type fare, along the lines of what you get at a wedding, or any nice hotel catered affair, but don't go for the food, go for the entertainment, which makes up for it in spades. If you want an incredible meal, go to Michael Mina, if you want to be thoroughly entertained for 3 hours while eating a good dinner, then ZinZanni is the ticket. Our tickets to the show were a Christmas gift from my brother & his fiancé, so since we were off the hook for dinner, we splurged on a really good bottle of wine at the show. A Stag's Leap Petite Syrah which was incredibly delicious and went amazingly well with the the fillet of beef we had for dinner. Good food, Great Wine, Great Show- it was a night to remember!
The other thing that made the weekend so nice was that I skipped the normal weekend chores- no laundry, no house cleaning, no grocery store shopping, just spending time with the hubby & the dog. That was all well & good during the weekend, but now that Monday has rolled around, it meant nothing to make for lunch this morning, limited wardrobe options for work this morning, and worst of all- a house that looked pretty darn disheveled when I got home from work tonight. Luckily, I get off work at 3:30 in the afternoon most days, so after closing up shop I dropped the dog off at home (she gets to go to work with me), went to the grocery store, came home, started some laundry and started cleaning up the house. This did not leave a lot of time for making dinner though. Something quick was needed.
I was tempted to pick up the phone & call for take-out, but even without having to purchase the dinner tickets to ZinZanni, we still ended up dropping a pretty penny at the show last night (Stag's Leap is never the cheapest wine on the menu, by any means). Once I got take-out in my head though, my desire for Thai food was too much to ignore. I had all the ingredients I needed to whip up some red curry, and, it's something I can get on the table in 30 minutes. Well 30 minutes, if you don't count making the brown jasmine rice, which, despite what it says on the package needs at least an hour & 15 minutes to cook. That's not a big deal though, once the water boils and you add the rice, just turn it down to low and leave it alone for an hour or so. I started the rice when I started cleaning up the house and then by the time I got to making dinner, it was all ready to go.
Thai Style Red Curry with Chicken
1 shallot, sliced
2 tbsp fresh grated ginger
1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
1 small zucchini, cut into strips
salt & pepper
1 cup chicken broth
1 13.5 oz can light coconut milk
1 tbsp Thai red curry paste
1 tsp garlic chili sauce
2 tbsp Thai fish sauce
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 to 2 cups leftover roast chicken breast, skin removed & diced or 1 pkg boneless, skinless chicken breast tenders
fresh basil, finely chopped
1 cup brown jasmine rice, prepared according to package directions.
1/4 cup dry roasted peanuts, crushed
1/4 cup dry roasted peanuts, crushed
- Cook the Veggies. Sauté the shallots with some olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add in the ginger and sauté for another minute or two. Add the bell peppers and zucchini, season with salt & pepper, and continue to cook over medium heat for another few minutes, until the veggies have softened.
- Build the Sauce. Add the cup of chicken broth to the skillet, along with the can of light coconut milk. Add in the tbsp of Red Curry paste and stir well. Add the garlic chili sauce, the fish sauce & the brown sugar. Stir until the curry paste & sugar have completely dissolved. Let the curry simmer over medium low heat for about 10 minutes.
- Add in the chicken. Add the leftover chicken to the curry and continue simmering for another 10 minutes. If you don't have leftover roast chicken you can use boneless, skinless chicken breast tenders that have been cut into pieces. Add the chicken pieces to the curry sauce once the curry paste & brown sugar have completely dissolved and let it simmer in the sauce for the full 20 minutes.
- Serve! Once the chicken is heated through and the curry has simmered for a good 20 minutes, remove the curry from the heat, garnish with some fresh basil & the crushed peanuts and serve over steamed brown jasmine rice.
My wine choice for this dinner? A 2009 Hill Family Estates Sauvignon Blanc. The crisp fruity flavors go great with the spicy curry.