“Knowing and feeling are two different things, and feeling is what counts.”
Francois Lelord – Hector and the Search for Happiness
Sweet Potato & Chicken Curry Stew
I watched a movie a while ago… Hector and the Search for Happiness… starring the always brilliant Simon Pegg. I won’t turn this into a movie review I promise, but the movie was touching, thought provoking, funny and although slow paced, absolutely packed to the brim.
The reason I’m telling you about this wonderful movie is not only to encourage you to watch it, but also to explain how since watching the movie I became obsessed with making a sweet potato stew. In one very brief part Hector goes to the home of a family and enjoys some of their traditional sweet potato stew. The scene is imbued with such honesty that you swear you can almost taste the stew. I knew I would have to make it!
Although sweet potatoes are a staple around Be Still & Eat HQ, and I do use them in my ultra delicious and rich Beef & Guinness Stew, I really wanted to devise a dish where they would be the shining star… this recipe does that. I will admit that I didn’t spend even a single second researching what sweet potato stew from the movie might be like. Being the experimental and often-goes-with-feeling kind of person that I am, I just went for it. I knew the flavour profile I had imagined and I didn’t want to change that impression.
I wish you would make this if only for the aroma! The first time I made it was one of those warm days of early spring, all of the windows were open, and for some strange reason lots of people were coming to the door… must have been the stew! Each one of them commented on how good it smelled… from outside! True story! You need to make this stew!
I should point out that although I made this stew with chicken, I’ve also made it with shrimp and yet another version with chick peas. They all work!
Enjoy & Namaste!
- Olive oil for the pan
- 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 small onion, finely diced
- 1 rounded TBSP curry powder
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks
- 6 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into chunks
- 2 large sweet potatoes, cut into chunks
- 2 - 14 oz tins coconut milk
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup fresh or frozen peas
- S&P to taste
- Heat oil in a large heavy bottomed pot over high heat.
- Lower temperature to medium high and add onions and cook for 3 or 4 minutes until beginning to sweat.
- Add garlic stirring to combine for about 30 seconds.
- Add curry powder and stir to combine, allowing spice to meld with the onions and garlic.
- Add chicken pieces in stages being careful not to over crowd the pan and cook until golden, about 7 mins or so.
- ***If you are choosing shrimp for this recipe instead, I strongly recommend removing the shrimp once it has cooked mostly through to a separate dish to add back later... if using chick peas, add them at this point but you can leave them in for duration***
- Add sweet potato chunks tossing with other ingredients to combine flavours and cook out for a few minutes.
- Add coconut milk and chicken broth, reducing heat to medium low and covering.
- Check and stir the soup every 10 minutes or so until sweet potatoes are just fork tender, about 15 or 20 minutes.
- Add peas and adjust seasoning.
- Cook for another 5 minutes or so.
- Wait for people to be drawn to your kitchen by the scent!