Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Keeping dinner interesting...

The ingredients for tonight's dinner, Chicken XimXim with Ground Peanuts, are not new to us (save one interesting one...) but the finished dish was not really something we would usually have. XimXim translates into "stew" in the African dialect and the "secret" (or interesting...) ingredient to this dish would have to be the dried shrimp. I've never worked with them before so I had to go to a few places around town to find them, but my search ended at a local Asian food market.

To start this stew off, chunks of chicken breast are seasoned and cooked until no longer pink in the center. After removing the chicken, onions and sweet red bell peppers are cooked until softened - followed by chunky plum tomatoes, parsley and fresh minced garlic cloves. This is then simmered until the tomatoes release their juice and the mixture becomes thick. While you wait for that to happen, the dried shrimp and some roasted peanuts are whizzed in food processor until finely ground. When the time is up, the peanut mixture, chicken broth and coconut milk are added to the pot and simmered again for a few minutes. The peanut mixture adds a nutty body to the stew and helps thicken the liquid along with the coconut milk. The shrimp added a pungent salty background to the dish without making it too "fishy" tasting. This is a fairly light dish on its own, so I served the stew over fragrant brown jasmine rice to help drink up the appetizing broth. We were both quite surprised at how much we ended up enjoying the final result!


  1. Wheresmymind - I actually picked this rice up at a local co-op that has a bulk foods section!