Luscious Thai Chicken Pineapple curry and the 5 flavors of Thai cuisine

>> Monday, September 7, 2009

Thai Pineapple Chicken CurryThai cuisine is one that has been greatly influenced by all it's surrounding neighbors. To me the most obvious influence has been from Indian cuisine because of the spices and though very different but still similar, the curries. Thai food is unique in that it has created this perfectly well balanced harmony of 5 flavors that are present in every dish or in every meal. The flavors are salty,sweet,sour,bitter/aromatic and heat/spicy, not particular to that order. Some samples of how the flavors are brought into a dish can be from salty -from shrimp paste or fish sauce,sweet- from sugar or sweet fruits, sour from lemon or lime juice,bitter/aromatic-can come from bitter melons or aromatic herbs and green vegetables, heat- of course from chilies or the curry paste. Though not included in the 5 main flavors but common in many dishes is the sweet and creaminess of coconut milk.
Most people when they think Thai food think Hot!, but it's not all about the chili, it's about bringing out all those flavors that then compliment each other. I love spicy food but spicy to where it doesn't over power the rest of the dish. What's the point then, might as well grab whole chilies and start munching away, (ouch better grab the antacids). I do believe that in any type of cuisine the heat or spiciness is not the flavor that should overpower everything else, it should be a touch of what the rest of the dish is about. When I've heard people or friends say they have never tried or don't like Thai or other "spicy" cuisines because they are not able to handle the spiciness, it makes me feel a bit sad. To me it's a pity for people to miss out on such scrumptious meals when they really shouldn't have to. (By the way my recipes can all be adjusted to fit your personal "heat" level.)

Today I have a big favorite of not only mine but my husband and one of our frequent dinner guest's , Thai Chicken Pineapple curry with cherry tomatoes and bamboo shoots. Just writing this makes my mouth water. It so easy and fast to make, I guarantee they'll want seconds. The curry paste I used is my own from the previous recipe found here.

ingredients Thai yellow curryYour ingredients:
2 chicken breast
1 cup fresh pineapple, bite-size pieces
1/2 cup bamboo shoots
12 red cherry tomatoes
2 Tbs red curry paste
1 Tbs grated ginger
2 garlic cloves,minced
1 1/2 Tbs fish sauce
1 tsp sugar ( if using canned pineapple omit)
1/2 cup chicken broth (vegetarians can use vegetable)
1 cup coconut milk
1 Tbs vegetable oil
1/2 tsp. ground turmeric

1 red chile pepper, sliced , extra spicy optional
Fresh Cilantro or Basil leaves to garnish, optional

1. In separate cutting boards dice the pineapple and chicken into thick bite size pieces. In a large pan or wok warm up oil, then add the chicken and cook all the way through. Next add the ginger and garlic , cook for a few minutes then add the curry paste stir to combine with chicken. Then add the chicken broth, sugar,turmeric ,bamboo shoots and fish sauce. Add this point you can also add the extra chili pepper if your using it. Under medium heat cover and simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the coconut milk and stir, next add the cherry tomatoes and cook for another 5-8 minutes when the tomatoes should be soft.
*the coconut milk is added toward the end to prevent curdling*
curry bamboo shoots,cherry tomatoes,pineapple2. Done.When serving you can add a couple of Fresh Basil or Cilantro leaves for decoration. Serve with steamed white rice.

Covering the essentials of Thai cuisine we have a deliciously fruity,spicy and sweet, creamy curry with aromas that will have them all running to the dinner table.
cilantro , thai curry

* Tip~ you can use drained canned pineapple if fresh isn't available but it taste so much better with fresh. Makes great leftovers, that's if you have any left. *

Update:9/9/09 ~My Luscious Thai Chicken Pineapple curry and the 5 flavors of Thai cuisine is #1 on the Foodbuzz top 9 today, buzz worthy wouldn't you agree?!

My Luscious Thai Chicken Pineapple Curry recipe was chosen to be included in this beautiful cookbook. There are many talented bloggers in this book and it is a great honor to be among them. You can find me recipe on pages 90 and 91.

Order your copy now!


Rachel J September 8, 2009 at 12:01 PM  

hmm hmm I love pineapple curry!

Kelly at Crock tease September 8, 2009 at 1:38 PM  

I can practically smell it --or maybe that's the split peas in coconut milk and curry I'm slow-cooking today. Curries rule!

CheapAppetite September 9, 2009 at 1:09 AM  

Looks very yummy. Makes me hungry just before going to bed. lol. You should try simmering the curry a while longer until the coconut oil starting to seperate from coconut milk. It's very desirable in Thai curry. Make it looks even more delicious:)

laura September 9, 2009 at 2:02 AM  

wow, this looks and sounds amazing! i'm definitely going to try it!

Peggy September 9, 2009 at 8:56 AM  

pineapple and curry are a match made in heaven in my opinion!!!

Nancy September 9, 2009 at 9:00 AM  

Hi everyone,

I'm glad you all share my enthusiasm and love of curry :) CheapAppetite thanks for that tip, I did forget to add that the curry can be simmered longer under low heat. But you taught me about the coconut oil separating and it being very desirable in Thai curry, so thank you.
Kelly I love curried splt peas but never added coconut milk, sounds good. Let me know if it's on your blog so I can see your recipe,please.

Hope you all try this soon~

Andrea@WellnessNotes September 12, 2009 at 5:25 PM  

I love Thai food. This curry sounds delicious!

Congrats to making it to No. 1 of the Top 9! Great job!

Olga September 17, 2009 at 1:11 PM  

That looks like a beautiful dish. It just got a bit cooler here, so perfect time for soup!

Anonymous,  September 20, 2009 at 11:14 PM  

Made this tonight... it was very good but way hot! Out of 6 people I was the only one who could stand the heat. Next time I'll use half or even less curry paste.

Nancy September 21, 2009 at 4:34 PM  

Hi Anonymous~
Glad you tried the recipe and sorry to hear that you were the only one that could stand the heat. I'm wondering did you use my curry paste recipe for this dish or did you use another? In my paste recipe I do suggest that you can adjust to your own heat level, that's why I make my own paste. Well either way I think cooking is all about adjusting things to our own specific likes and wants. Hopefully next time you try it you have better success:)

Anonymous,  September 21, 2009 at 7:08 PM  

Thanks for the response! I actually used a store-bought red curry paste from a local Asian store. I wasn't sure how hot it was until everything was already in the pan.
It was still delicious, and today's left-over actually had mellowed a bit. Next time I'll just use a bit less. :)

acatslady,  October 5, 2009 at 8:29 PM  

I made this with 5 fresh hot thai bird chilis and 2 regular hot red peppers, and curry paste (roasted and regular Thai Kitchen) and it could've been hotter. I used fresh pineapple and left out the tomatoes but added onion. I served it with roasted cashew nuts on top. You were right, no leftovers! It was amazing!

Nancy October 6, 2009 at 1:23 PM  

Hi acatslady,

Wow,you wanted your curry extra spicy :) Glad you liked it.

Magic of Spice May 15, 2010 at 4:59 PM  

Curry is wonderful. I would like to try this with shrimp. Looks great

Nancy May 17, 2010 at 4:25 PM  

@ Magic of Spice - I think it would taste great with shrimp too:)

Jessica | Cajunlicious April 25, 2011 at 1:56 PM  

Yum! Love your blog! Came across it on foodbuzz & am a new follower!
- Jessica @

Nancy April 25, 2011 at 3:01 PM  

@Jessica, Thank you and nice to meet you :) !

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