Former Spokesman-Review reporter Heather Lalley has delivered one culinary degree, one baby girl and one cookbook all within the last month or so.
Here’s a recipe from her cookbook, “The Chicago Homegrown Cookbook” (Voyager, $30) which features 29 Chicago area chefs who make getting local, sustainable foods on their menus a priority. Lalley also keeps a blog that chronicled her transition from reporter to chef on a blog at ChicagoNow. Find it at www.chicagonow.com/blogs/flour-girl/
Here’s a sample recipe from the new book:
Sweet Apple Chicken Curry with Jasmine Rice
From “The Chicago Homegrown Cookbook,” by Heather Lalley, former Spokesman-Review features writer. The recipe is from Danielle Hrzic of Gourmet Gorilla in Chicago.
1 Amish chicken, about 3 1/2 pounds, cut into serving pieces
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
2 ribs celery, chopped fine
1 large onion, chopped fine
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 Granny Smith apples, cored and chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cumin
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups chicken broth
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
Season chicken with salt and pepper and sear in olive oil. Remove chicken and set aside. Add 2 tablespoons butter. Cook celery, onion and garlic over moderately low heat stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened. Core and chop the apples. Add the apples and cook the mixture, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add the bell pepper, curry powder, cinnamon and cumin. Cook the mixture, stirring for an additional minute. Add flour and cook the mixture over moderate heat. Add broth and chicken with any juices that have accumulated. Cover and bring liquid to a boil and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until chicken is tender and cooked through.
Transfer the chicken, with a slotted spoon, to a serving plate. Boil the vegetable mixture, stirring, for 3-5 minutes, or until it is thickened slightly, and season the sauce with salt and pepper. Pour the sauce over the chicken and top with chopped parsley. Serve the curry with steamed jasmine rice and chutney.
Yield: 4 to 6 servings