Skillet Chicken with Kale & Burdock Curried Cream

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Crispy chicken thighs with kale and burdock root in a creamy curry sauce. A rich and comforting meal made in just one skillet. This recipe is adapted from Roots by Diana Morgan. 

cast-iron chicken with kale and burdock curried cream

When someone asks me what my favorite thing to eat is, I can never pick just one. But curry (of any kind), is on the top tier of Tess’s Favorite Foods. 

Not only do I like it from an eating perspective, but also from a cooking one. Plop any veggie or protein in a sea of creamy, aromatic goodness and you’re in business. And now that we’re officially in the cooler season I can finally make it!

ingredients for chicken with kale and burdock curried cream

I thought burdock root was a particularly good contender for curry because it absorbs flavor really well. It also adds a really nice delicate bite. Burdock is what makes this dish unique, and helps make it a touch more healthy. 

So grab hold of your stretchy pants cuz this curry is made with…heavy cream 😱. Oh yeah, this is no sissy coconut milk deal, I’m going all out French, here. Butter, garlic, cream, the whole nine yards. When I make comfort food, I mean it 😈

Now, of course, you can sub with whole milk or coconut milk, I won’t hold it against you. Just remember there’s kale and burdock root in this recipe–two very nutritional ingredients. In theory, it cancels out the heavy cream…right? 

Tess 🧡

chicken with kale and burdock curried cream on a plate with rice


Cooking with Burdock Root

Burdock is a healthy root vegetable you can add to almost any stew or stir-fry. It cooks like a carrot or radish. Burdock root available at Asian markets year-round and is inexpensive. 

Before cooking burdock roots, scrub them with a brush or sponge to remove any dirt and then rinse under cold water. No need to peel it–the skin adds lots of flavor and nutrients. If you plan to sauté or stir-fry your burdock, slice it very thin so it cooks through. Burdock root is particularly tough and fibrous so it takes longer to cook and soften. If you’re adding burdock to a slow cooking soup or stew, you can get away with it diced. 



More Recipes with Burdock Root

Burdock Fries

Burdock Root & Purple Potato Gratin 

Braised Burdock, Yellow Beets, & Carrots 

Pickled Burdock Root (via Forager Chef)

Burdock Root Salad (via JustOneCookbook)

Burdock Root Sushi (via Izzy Cooking)

cast-iron chicken with kale and burdock curried cream

Skillet Chicken with Kale & Burdock Curried Cream

SERVES: 4⎪ DIFFICULTY: Intermediate⎪ FUNK: Casual

Mise en Place

For the Chicken:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric 
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder 
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

For the Curried Cream:

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced
  • 4 ounces burdock root, wash, trimmed, and thinly sliced on a bias
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1½ cups heavy cream
  • 1 bunch kale, stems discarded and leaves finely chopped
COOKS NOTE if you want your cream to look more yellow and vibrant, stir in some more ground turmeric before finishing in the oven. 



Preheat the oven to 350F. Whisk the flour, turmeric, garlic powder, and salt, in a bowl. Season the chicken all over with salt and pepper and coat all over in the flour mixture. Heat the vegetable oil in a large oven-proof skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken, skin-side down, and cook until golden brown. Flip and cook until browned. Transfer to a plate.



Melt the butter with the chicken fat and swirl to coat the pan. Add the shallot and sauté until translucent. Add the burdock root and sauté until fork-tender and the shallots start the brown. Reduce the heat if the shallots brown too quickly (don’t want ’em to burn). Stir in the garlic, curry powder, sugar, and salt, to taste. Stir until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Add the chicken stock and cook until the liquid is reduced by half. Add a handful of kale to the pan, and stir until wilted. Keep adding handfuls of kale until it’s all in the pot and wilted. 



Add a handful of kale to the pan, and stir until wilted. Keep adding handfuls of kale until it’s all in the pot and wilted. Stir in the heavy cream. Place the chicken on top. Place in the oven and cook until the chicken is cooked through about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool slightly. Serve with rice. 



Chayote Variation: Replace the burdock root with sliced chayote squash

Vegan Variation: In Step 1, use sliced tofu instead of chicken. In Step 2, use vegetable oil instead of butter, and vegetable stock in place of chicken. In Step 3, use coconut milk instead of heavy cream.


Did you make Skillet Chicken with Kale & Burdock Curried Cream? Let me know how it turned out and leave a comment below! 

Food for Thought

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