Japanese-Style (Wafuu) Chicken Curry

This Wafuu chicken curry is a very popular weeknight meal in Japan. It’s mild and richly comforting with a slightly sweet taste that kids adore. Traditional Wafuu curry often contains soy, wheat, peanut and and bonito flakes (fish), but I’ve replaced these allergens without the slightest sacrifice to flavor.

This is a wonderful comfort food dish, which presents beautifully.

Makes: 4 servings
Free of: gluten and all top allergens

Photo: Chris Gonzaga


  • 4 cups chicken broth (look for allergen- safe brands)
  • 3-inch square Kombu seaweed
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 tbsp canola oil, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups diced yellow onion
  • 2 tsp finely minced or grated fresh ginger
  • 2 tsp finely minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 3 tbsp brown rice flour (preferably superfine)
  • 2 tbsp crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar, divided
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch rounds
  • 1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup grated Fuji apple (1 to 2 peeled apples)
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 4 cups cooked white rice


  1. Combine chicken broth and Kombu in a medium pot. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes
  2. Generously season chicken with salt and pepper. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to a large skillet or Dutch oven over high heat. Once the oil begins to shimmer, add chicken and stir-fry until golden brown on all sides, about 6 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-high and add remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Add onion, ginger and garlic and sauté until onions start to soften, about 2 minutes. Add curry powder and cayenne, and sauté for 1 minute more. Sprinkle in the brown rice flour and sauté until browned and aromatic, about 2 minutes.
  4. Remove pan from heat and add 1/2 cup broth, stirring vigorously to combine. Add two more 1/2 cups broth, stirring vigorously after each addition, and incorporating any browned bits from bottom of the pan.
  5. Return pan to heat, remove Kombu, and add remaining chicken broth, crushed tomatoes and 1 teaspoon vinegar. Stir well to combine.
  6. Add carrots, potatoes, reserved chicken and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and loosely cover. Cook at a slow simmer, stirring often, for 30 minutes, or until potatoes are just tender when pricked with a fork.
  7. Add shredded apple, honey, remaining 1 teaspoon vinegar and a big pinch of salt. Stir well and loosely cover. Continue to cook at a slow simmer for 15 minutes, or until the apples have melted into the curry and the vegetables are really tender.
  8. Serve over steamed rice.

See also: 
Pasta e Fagioli with ‘Cheesy’ Garlic Croutons
Chicken and Butternut Squash Curry

is the author of three cookbooks, including the new Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking and The Allergen-Free Baker's Handbook. Visit her at http://cybelesfreetoeat.com.