Recipe: Riz Casimir, A Swiss Curry from the 1950s

The founder of the Mövenpick restaurants, Ueli Prager, introduced a new dish called Riz Casimir in 1952. With ingredients considered exotic at the time — curry, pineapple and banana, this retro dish continues to be popular in Switzerland. Prager’s original recipe called for veal, but I prefer using chicken. He also cooked the fruit in the curry, but I like it better served at room temperature on the side. Full of color, this super-easy and kid-friendly dish has great textures — especially when served with brown rice — and a delicious blend of sweet and savory flavors.


RIZ CASIMIR

Recipe adapted from Croqu’menus (9th edition, 2005, p. 91).
Serves 4-5 people

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon canola oil
shallots, finely chopped
1-2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 thumb-sized knob of fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated or chopped
chicken breasts, sliced into thin and bite-size pieces
250 ml (1 cup) chicken/vegetable broth
250 ml (1 cup) coconut milk
1-2 tablespoons curry powder
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
salt, to taste

Optional toppings: chopped cilantro, toasted almonds, pineapple, apple slices (dipped in lemon juice to prevent them from browning) and canned cherries.

Serve with hot brown rice

Instructions:

1. Heat the oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Saute the shallots, ginger and garlic with the curry powder for a few minutes until they become tender and fragrant.

2. Add the chicken to the pan and cook for about 5-10 minutes, stirring frequently, until browned. Remove from the pan and set-aside.

3. Separately, whisk the flour into the chicken or vegetable broth. Add this to the pan and simmer for a few minutes. Next, add the red pepper to the pan and cook for another 2-3 minutes.

4. Return the chicken to the pan with the red pepper, place a cover on top and simmer for about 10 minutes until the chicken fully cooked.

5. Remove the cover and stir in the coconut milk until it has heated through and the sauce has thickened slightly.

6. Serve immediately with hot brown rice and optional toppings.

4 replies »

  1. This is a wonderful trip down memory lane. My Papi ordered this from Mövenpick for a family get together in 1961. The excitement and wonder was something else and it was delicious! Until then we had only read about curry in books. Thank you!

    • Hello Danielle! Thanks for your lovely message. This sounds like a nice memory. I really appreciate that you shared it with me. We love this dish, and it’s so easy to make. And, it’s still very popular in Switzerland. I just had it for lunch in a cafeteria in the Jura canton last week! Many thanks, and best wishes, -Heddi

    • Yes, isn’t it? I like the combination of fruit with the curry (although I prefer it on the side) and the texture of the toasted nuts — either almonds or some cashews.

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