Flying Jacob (Flygande Jacob in Swedish) is about as hard core, old school 1970s as you can get.
It’s the Space Hopper, the Chopper bicycle, the bell-bottomed jeans, of the culinary world. The only way to make it more kitsch would be to dress it in a purple Paisley-patterned shirt with a collar the size of an albatross’ wing-span, complete with a green and yellow kipper tie.
It’s the food equivalent of listening to Abba’s Arrival whilst watching Björn Borg winning Wimbledon.
The original version of this dish was invented by a certain Ove Jacobsson, who worked in the air freight industry, hence the name. It became famous after appearing in Swedish magazine “Allt Om Mat” (“Everything About Food”) in 1976.
That first incarnation of the dish contained cream and peanuts, and so is not exactly Paleo friendly.
This, our reworking of Flying Jacob, was inspired by Annika Sjöö’s book “Annikas Paleokök” (“Annika’s Paleo Kitchen”), which contains some really nice reinterpretations of Swedish standards, and is highly recommended if you’re a Swedish speaker.
Paleo Flying Jacob
- 1kg skinless chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces
- 280g cubed smoked bacon
- 2 500ml tins coconut milk
- 2 medium onions, finely chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 4 tsp curry powder
- 1 large banana, chopped
- 3 tbsp nut butter – see Notes
- 3 dl cashew nuts
- coconut oil
- Heat about 4 tbsp of coconut oil over medium heat in a large non-stick pan. Stir fry the bacon until golden brown. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon, leaving the rendered fat in the pan. Set aside.
- Add the onion to the pan, and stir fry until nicely softened and browned, about 5 minutes or so. Add the garlic and curry powder, and stir fry for a further 3 minutes.
- Add the coconut milk, stir well, and bring up to a low simmer. Add the nut butter and banana. Stir well, and return to a low simmer. Cook for about 10 minutes or so, stirring often.
- Add the chicken and cashews to the pan. Stir well, return to a low simmer, and then cook for 20 minutes or so, until the chicken is thoroughly cooked – a piece should be white all the way through when cut in half.
- Remove the pan from the heat. Serve, garnished with a few extra fresh banana slices.
- Here I used hazelnut butter, but you could use whichever nut butter you prefer.
- More often than not, Flying Jacob is served with rice, so the Paleo version would pair up quite nicely with any variant of cauliflower rice. On this particular occasion, however, I had an irresistible urge to eat Rotmos, Swedish mashed root vegetables with it.