I have been craving Thai food for weeks, but, for one reason or another, it hasn’t worked out. Dinner plans changed, I was too whipped to make the effort to even pick up carry out (much less look up a phone number), or couldn’t decide where to turn after becoming disillusioned with our (former) go-to Thai joint in Royal Oak (any suggestions???)
So, today I picked up some green curry paste for the first time (finally!) and even getting stuck in a traffic jam until 8 p.m. couldn’t stop me from making it when I got home. Those who are industrious could certainly make their own green curry paste (it includes things like Thai ginger, lemongrass, green chilies, coriander, garlic, onion, cumin and so much more). I generally let Thai Kitchen do the work for me when it comes to curry paste. (They make a ready to pour sauce too, but I prefer doing it this way for this type of curry).
It turned out great, if I do say so myself. I loosely followed some recipes, but here’s what I ended up doing (which is about double any normal 2-person serving. I had high hopes and decided to load us up for dinner and lunch for the next couple of days. Good thing it worked out!)
I’m not preachy when it comes to being vegetarian (and I even like to have meaty options for guests depending on the situation), but for those who wonder, “What in the world does someone who’s vegan possibly eat?” — this recipe is a fine answer to that question. And it tastes way better than any old grilled chicken breast** (I’m just saying).
2 14 oz. cans coconut milk (I happened to have one lite and one regular)
3 Tbsp. green curry paste (I’ll see tomorrow if it gets spicier overnight, but next time I might go with 3 1/2 or 4)
1 pkg. extra firm tofu, cubed
3 Tbsp. brown sugar
3 Tbsp. vegetarian oyster sauce (I get mine from Kai Sun Oriental Market in Troy. If you can’t find any, some recipes say you can use 1/3 of the amount of soy sauce instead.)
1 8 oz. can bamboo shoots
1 c. frozen peas
1 small onion chopped
1-2 peppers sliced (I went with 1 red and 1/2 an orange – next time I’ll do more)
2/3 c. vegetable broth
1. In a large saucepan or pot, blend the coconut milk and curry paste and heat to medium heat.
2. I then eyeballed roughly 3 Tbsp. each of brown sugar and oyster sauce and blended.
3. Add tofu, onions and peppers. I thought I would add this first, so it would have the most time to cook (in the case of the veggies) and to soak up the curry goodness (in the case of the tofu). It’s science.
4. I then threw in the bamboo, peas and veg stock. I kind of feel like it could do without the stock, but I’m thinking maybe it cuts the thickness of the coconut milk. Either way, it came out tasting really good, so I guess I’ll leave it in!
5. I let it hang out over medium/low heat for about 20 minutes, just to get the spices blended and the onions and peppers a little soft. I think you could put just about any vegetable in this and it would taste good. I just tried to keep it simple and included the things I think of when I think “green curry.”
6. Serve over rice (I went with brown) in a bowl and it’s kind of soup like if you ladel in tons o’ sauce like me. Enjoy!
** That being said, meat-eaters could easily substitute chicken for the tofu in this recipe. 🙂