When my body found out that New York was the city that never sleeps. It took it to heart.

It didn’t quite get the memo that “never sleeps” really just implies staying out really late, destroying your liver, and then sleeping in until 1 or 2 to replenish it. An energetic kind of insomnia.

Instead, it decided to take the whole thing at face value. By 8 AM. I am up without fail. Whether I went to bed at 11 or at 4 (although if I went to bed at 11, odds are I was up by 6).

And all my friends wonder why I absolutely refuse to stay out past 3. It’s not just about my intrinsic lameness (although I’m willing to bet that is a key factor.) It’s physiological. (Anatomy may be over. But we have a physiology exam left. Followed by spring break and 8 more weeks of immunology. So “it’s over” but not really. Just like “I sleep” but not really.)

Now I bet you’re saying. Um. Joanne. I really like hearing about your Circadian rhythms. In detail. Seriously. I’m…uhhhh…fascinated. But…I came for the food. So what does this have to do with curry?

Funny you should ask.

Because the answer is. Everything.

Fun fact of the day that may someday help you when you are on Jeopardy or Who Wants To Be A Millionaire or Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader (I watch that show at the gym sometimes…way more depressing than anything else on the air. Apparently my academic potential peaked. At age 10.)

Mangoes are high in tryptophan. (That molecule in turkey that your Uncle Bill raves about on Thanksgiving every year. Yeah. You know what I’m talking about.) So high in fact that, unlike turkey (sorry Uncle Bill!), they actually have somnolent effects (whereas the post Thanksgiving dinner nap is probably due to the massive amount of carbs and alcohol. And not the poultry.)

So, you know, if you’re like me and are completely adverse to taking any medication. And you have sleep issues. This dish is worth a try. Plus it tastes way better than Lunesta or Ambien or whatever meds you’re on. Which is, I guess, an added benefit.

And if you end up winning one of the aforementioned game shows due to this useless trivia that I’ve inoculated you with this morning. I take Paypal. And checks. And gift cards to Trader Joe’s.

I’m pretty sure this curry is Burmese in origin, which really means that it is a mixture of everything southeast Asian (though mostly Thai and Indian, in this case). It is bursting with flavor from the spice of the curry powder, sweetness of the mango and raisins, fat from the coconut milk and acidity from the vinegar. The chicken is poached in the mango curry sauce rather than fried separately and so it is smooth and silky. Moist and delicious. As, you know, good chicken should be.

Mango Chicken Curry
Serves 4, adapted from Simply Recipes

1 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
2 tbsp yellow curry powder
1/2 tsp cumin
2 mangoes, peeled and diced
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1 1/4 cup water
1 1/2 lb boneless, skinless, chicken thighs cut into small pieces
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup lite coconut milk
salt, sugar, and pepper, to taste
cilantro to garnish

1 Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the red bell pepper and cook for a couple more minutes. Add the curry powder and cumin, cook for a few more minutes. The spices will absorb some of the oil, so if anything begins to stick too much to the bottom of the pan, add a little more oil to the pan. Add the ginger and garlic, cook for one minute more.

2 Add the vinegar, water, and a 1/2 of the chopped mango to the pan. Increase the heat and bring to a boil, then lower the heat to maintain a low simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove pan from heat. Scoop the sauce into a blender. Purée the sauce, pulsing until smooth. Return the sauce to the pan.

3 Add chicken pieces and raisins to the pan. Return to a low simmer. Cover the pan and let cook for 8-10 minutes. Chicken should be just cooked through. Use a knife to cut open the largest piece to check.

4 Add remaining mango pieces to the pan. Stir in the coconut milk. Let cook at a very low temperature for another minute or two, uncovered. Do not let boil! Or the cream may curdle. Adjust seasonings. If a little too sweet, add a little more vinegar. If not sweet enough, you can add a dash of sugar. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with rice and garnish with cilantro.

You are reading this post on Eats Well With Others at https://joanne-eatswellwithothers.com. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and or owner of Eats Well With Others. All rights reserved by Joanne Bruno.
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68 Responses to Mango Chicken Curry

  1. monicajane says:

    you’ve done it again!!

    I really want to try this…have never used fruit in curry other than raisins…

    thanks so much for stopping by…that was really sweet.

    I’m working on a post and hopefully it will be up this weekend…something a little bit fun and odd…my favorite!

    take care!

  2. Looks lovely….I love mango gravy.

  3. Pam says:

    You are one busy young lady! Love this recipe! It looks delicious!

  4. elra says:

    Delicious and a bit of tangy from the mango is perfect serve with hot steaming rice. Yum!

  5. Dear,
    Lovely curry..definitely going on the must-try list. I use raw mangoes in curry but I am curious to know what your version has.Are those 2 mangoes RAW, semi_RAW or ripe?

  6. doggybloggy says:

    tryptophan huh? good to know – I also read that the darker meats of the turkey had more tryptophan but that may or may not be true…this curry sounds like it would make a nice breakfast – bully on the tryptophan.

  7. Sippity Sup says:

    You go girl. And keep the curry coming! GREG

  8. Love love love the idea of mangoes and raisins in curry. Yums!

  9. Martha says:

    Yummy! Great recipes this week Joanne (sorry, just now getting a chance for a little catch up!). Hope you have a great weekend 🙂

  10. Jessie says:

    Ah, Joanne, you are speaking to me in my sleep-addled state. I must add this tryptophan-rich recipe to my collection. I’ve still got one of your baked beans recipes open on my compy to make, but I haven’t had time yet! Stop posting such awesome recipes that I want to make! Actually, don’t, because then I would be sad.

    Some of my college friends never get why I don’t like to stay out until wee hours, either. We need our sleep!

  11. Debbi Smith says:

    So is this more like a soup or just very saucy? It sounds delicious!

    Unlike you, I could sleep until noon every day. Or at least stay in bed. Which I haven’t done since I was about 16.

  12. Karine says:

    I am a mango-addict. Everything with mango is or sounds delicious. Great recipe you have!

  13. sra says:

    That looks and sounds v tasty. I’ve never eaten it, though! I once ate a mango-chicken-curried mayo salad that I keep yearning for – never made it myself as I didn’t want to disappoint myself.

  14. Next time I can’t sleep I’ll remember a little mango ‘night cap’ 🙂 I love curry too – this recipe sounds like a winner in many way.

    Glad to be back online!

  15. Katerina says:

    This recipe looks great. I totally love sweet and sour tastes and chicken is my favorite poultry. By the way I forgot to mention it in my previous posts I did vote for you. Good Luck.

  16. I am totally with u,this cmg from some1 who[dreams of] lives to sleep for 10 hours….

    Yeah sure ,no carbs for me for lunch either,unless i wanna hit the snooze button for a boring afternoon lecture,actually we barely have boring lectures [for d jus in case benefit of any profs who might be reading this:-)))]….
    And no wonder i wanna sleep so muc with the carbs i eat to make up for the skip at lunch:-)))
    I jus know what ur talking about the burst of flavours here babes , we had a goan mango shrimp curry today and its almost similiar ,jus that we dont need to fry the onions in oil ,add a green chilly,deseeded, fresh raw green local mangoes, and grind a thick spice paste ,all simmered to perfection in a mud pot…deliciously so and am so with ya on this super curry …..

  17. teresa says:

    so yummy! i actually made a curry dish last night. it’s a flavor i’m still acquiring a taste for, but i like it more and more. the mangos really tip this over the egde, it looks fantastic!

  18. Andreas says:

    Sounds really good.
    Those close-ups are mouth-watering.

  19. Lea Ann says:

    ok This looks seriously good! Another recipe bookmarked. Gotta give this a try.

  20. Angie says:

    Your academic potential didn’t peak, you just remember much more important things now 🙂 Oh, and great recipe!

  21. Joanne
    I am so glad that despite your very young age you still practice restraint in your nighttime gallivanting! Bravo girl, that way you can gift us with these wonderful posts and dishes; I am salivating here, love it!!!

  22. Mmmmmm the curry looks so good! And Boy’s a big fan of all cuisines Asian so it’ll be made at some point in time! A couple weeks ago, I woke up at 6.10 EVERY MORNING independent of time I went to bed. So strange.

  23. Actually, I find all the Circadian rhythm stuff interesting. =) But you’re right… no good can come from staying out all night. There is no lameness in that. No lameness at all. (Says she who can’t really stay up late anymore.)

  24. Even if mangoes didn’t have tryptophan, I would still make this. Mangoes are the best. I think this curry would be especially good for me since I’m such a crap spice eater. 🙂 Hopefully the sweetness of the mangoes offset the spice!

  25. Mimi says:

    Your new blog template goes so well with all of the orange hued food you’ve been making. That curry looks beautiful!!

  26. Mary says:

    I can feel the taste of the various elements playing on my tongue as I type this. I love the heat and I love the sweet. This is reallly a lovely recipe. Blessings…Mary

  27. oh wow what a yummy looking curry impressive

  28. Pam says:

    I am the same way, no matter what time I go to bed, I’m up early. Also, no matter what time I eat breakfast, I’m ready for lunch at lunch time.

  29. Mmm… the curry sounds super delicious with the addition of mango! a must try!

  30. Kathleen says:

    This sounds fabulously delicious!!!

  31. Joanne,,curry looks great n perfect creamy dear sounds good fruits in curry,,i like mango curry…

  32. Cynthia says:

    I’m drooling right now. I have some beautiful mangoes sitting in the fridge. After reading your recipe I just want to go and stuff the mangoes in my mouth. I am also totally lame like you and I don’t go out on weeknights and I don’t like to go out until 3:00AM either. I’m like a 54 year old in a 23 year old body. So by the time I’m actually in my 50’s, I’ll be comatose. But still eating probably 😉

  33. Looks too temting joanne, very unusual combo but sounds great…and looks beautiful

  34. Rosabela says:

    This sounds fabulous! And I love the new look!

  35. gotnomilk says:

    Mmmm. I’ll definitely be trying this one!

  36. I just might have to make this. I never cook chicken because it always turns out dry and boring, but you said this makes it tender. And I believe you. So try, I must.

  37. Chris says:

    I’m too old to be out after midnight anymore, so I don’t know what you’re talking about;)

    I love the sound of this chicken curry. Saving it to try (so it had better be good or I’m blaming you! kidding!).

  38. theUngourmet says:

    I’ve never had curry with mangoes. This has gorgeous color and looks mighty delicious! Now, get some rest! 😀

  39. gaga says:

    Mmmm, mangoes and curry, a great combo!

  40. Faith says:

    Curry is a favorite in my house — I need to make this! I love how the chicken is poached in the flavorful curry, it sounds like perfection!

  41. Kim says:

    I definitely think this would taste much better than Ambien! I’m a non-sleeper like you. I know my children will be up at the break of dawn, but yet I force myself to stay awake for the sake of having “me time”. Crazy, crazy!

    I’ve recently experimented with curry and I like the idea of adding fruit (which I haven’t tried yet). This looks gorgeous!

  42. Velva says:

    This mango chicken curry looks amazing! Love curry. This a wonderful dish.
    I am with Kim, this would taste much better than Ambien.

  43. Amy says:

    “…stay out past 3.” HA! I can’t keep my eyes open after 10pm. I’m so old. You only think you want to hang out with me 😉

    This is fascinating about mangoes. Seriously. I had no idea – I love them, but now they have an actual purpose. I wonder if the sleepy side effect works on kids, too?

  44. polwig.com says:

    I never knew that mangos had a lot of tryptophan… due to that this is probably a great dinner to serve to someone who you do not want to linger too long after… followedby mango lassies for dessert 🙂


  45. This meal looks delicious. What a great recipe- mango, chicken and curry!

  46. Mari says:

    Seriously I think you need to stop posting such amazing dishes until you invite me over! this is torture lol

  47. I love curry chicken. This one looks so rich and full flavor. I rarely use curry but I love it. What a great recipe!

  48. Raina says:

    This sounds so delicious. I love sweet and savory dishes. I think it is good you don’t stay out late..too dangerous anyway. Plus you do need your sleep. I know I sound like a mom, but you are smart. I still cannot figure out how you go to school and cook and blog. Pretty impressive.

  49. I never had mango in curry! I bet it adds a nice note to it. How weird that mango has tryptophan! I could see that as a who wants to be a millionaire question – I can relate to you watching the 5th grader show – I watch millionaire whilst on the treadmill.

  50. sophia says:

    Mmm….great minds think alike…I made mango curry risotto today! I’ve actually made mango chicken curry before….a bit different from yours though!

  51. Little Inbox says:

    This is yummy! I never had mango in curry before.

  52. Nicole, RD says:

    Ah! I want to make everything you make! I made your spicy tofu eggplant dish the other day, I don’t know if you saw…but it was wonderful!

  53. Debinhawaii says:

    This looks delicious and a good way to use up some extra mangoes. 😉

  54. tigerfish says:

    Ooh la la, mangoes….and mangoes in a curry. You are making a dish which is like my 2 recent posts combined…lol! Next time, I would add mangoes into my curry and then make a pasta sauce out of it. ;p

  55. Graziana says:

    I love mangoes, your recipe looks great and if it will make me also sleep well… hey, it’s just perfect!

  56. Michelle says:

    OH….I love to sleep in and can’t understand why some people get up early when it’s not necessary!

    The Chicken and Mango sounds delish!

  57. sweetlife says:

    stay out until 4?I get tired even thinking about that..I need sleep people!! great dish..lovely as always..


  58. Shirley says:

    Love this recipe Joanne. Is the vinegar necessary?

  59. SE says:

    yummy..i am drooling over this curry..! Didn’t know this is Burmese version..so much similar to one prepared in parts of India..

  60. SE says:

    hey..loved the new look of the blog !

  61. Muneeba says:

    I was abt to comment on the brownies post, then saw this mango curry and stopped in my tracks … had to write and tell how amazing this looks! Must have. Now.

  62. ejm says:

    Mmmm, mango chicken curry… that sounds really good. Even though mangoes are $1 each here, I think we neeeeeed to splash out and try this.


  63. Anonymous says:

    Can you do chicken stock rather than water? Just wondering why water over stock. Loving your blog. Can’t wait to cook this! Thank you!!

    • Joanne says:

      Hi! I think that water is used instead of chicken broth because a lot of flavor is really imparted from the fruits and the spices. I’m sure using chicken broth wouldn’t make much of a difference in the finished product though. Let me know how it turns out if you try it!

  64. Kiwi says:

    This is very bland. I used chicken stock instead of plain water, two kinds of curry for more complexity and added cayenne for more heat. I couldn’t bring myself to add more salt than what I had already poured in, so I finally gave up and ate it. It was a good looking and very disappointing combination.

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