9 to 5 Japanese-style Curry Rice (日本スタイルのカレーライス)

No work to do, so blog I shall.

I’ve been a legal assistant for all of 2 months. Before that, I was a writer and a teacher. Basically, I was my job—I thought about it on the way to work, from work, on the weekend, on holiday; even sleep offered no escape from it.

Now as an official 9-to-5er, my job no longer defines me. It does not follow me on my way home or on my errands, nor does it plague my dreams as I sleep.

I may be one of the few people who is actually OK (so far) with a 9-to-5 schedule. No, I don’t plan on being a legal aid for the rest of my life. I am wise enough, however, to be grateful for the work that I do have and also to realize that this job is a means to an end and is by no means an end.

You know what the best part of my job is? The walk home. Listening to my little iPod, eyes smiling, I bounce down the street and think about what I’m going to have for dinner. And now that it’s almost officially Fall, I’ve started craving warm, homey foods again.

One of my favorite dishes to make is one I grew up eating at home — Japanese-style Curry Rice (日本スタイルのカレーライス). It’s hearty, wholesome and tummy-warming. You can add whatever kind of vegetables and meat you like (I usually do ground beef or chicken to save time, which makes my version a mix between curry rice and hayashi rice—ハヤシライス.)—convenient when you  have veggies you’re trying to use up. After just 30 min., you can sit down with a big spoon and a side of red pickles (fukujin-zuke, 福神漬) and dig in!

Japanese-style Curry Rice (日本スタイルのカレーライス)

INGREDIENTS

1 carrot, peeled and chopped into large pieces

1 medium potato, peeled and chopped

1 medium onion

150 g ground chicken or beef

1/2 cup corn kernels

1 cup chinese greens

1/2 small pkg Japanese curry

1 1/4 cup water

oil for frying

For Rice

2/3 cups short-grain rice

5/6 cup water

DIRECTIONS

1. Prepare and cook rice. (I wash and drain it 3 times in water—because that’s what my mom always does—and then cook it in my rice cooker.)

2. Fry meat in a pan until no longer pink.

3. Add onion, potato and carrot and fry until lightly golden.

4. Add water and bring to a boil. Stir in curry until thoroughly combined. Reduce heat to lowest setting, cover and allow to simmer for 20 minutes.

5. Once potatoes and carrots are completely cooked through and the curry has thickened, add corn and chinese greens. Stir in and allow to cook uncovered for about 5 minutes.

6. Serve over Japanese short-grain rice.

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