I had curry cravings today. Japanese curry would have been my first choice, or a stew of some sort over couscous or rice. I didn’t have any ingredients to make any of that, so it was either a frozen dinner, or improvise something tastily curry.
I made Curry Fried (Brown) Rice with Shrimp and Cranberries. Turned out well.
Brown rice is not the best grain for fried rice, but since it was the only kind on hand, I cooked it in the rice cooker with less water than I would normally use. After the rice cooled (or after much of the moisture in the freshly cooked rice has evaporated), I sauteed onions and garlic with the shrimp in a large pan until lightly browned, then added in the rice. Season the mixture with ground coriander, ground cumin, curry powder, and salt & pepper to taste. With dried, sweetened cranberries in my pantry, I threw in a handful to balance the earthiness of the cumin and the spiciness of the curry. Let the cranberries plump up for a few minutes on low heat, then right before turning off the heat, add in mint and flat leaf parsley to brighten the flavors.
It was the perfect dinner, hitting just the spot. The shrimp was meaty, the spices were tummy-warming, and the cranberries were sweet and plump. Even more satisfying is the fact that something improvised on the spot can turn out to be so good. Let me reiterate the ingredients: