December 13, 2012 § 2 Comments
J: This is one of our staples that we just never got around to posting before now. Curries are great because they are typically one-pot meals (two, if you make rice), and you can make a huge amount of food very easily, especially if you’re cooking for one person. We tend to tweak this a little every time we make it — sometimes we use storebought curry paste, sometimes homemade; sometimes we use fish sauce, sometimes (…almost always) we don’t; sometimes we make it vegetarian, sometimes we use chicken; and depending on our mood we make it a red curry or a green curry. Regardless of the choices we make, it is always delicious.
This version of it will be green, and vegetarian, and using homemade curry paste, and also including fish sauce for I think the first time ever. If you are making a red curry, just replace everything that says “green” with “red”!
Thai Green Curry
(tweaked from original recipe found here)
1 tbsp canola, peanut or sesame oil
2 tbsp green curry paste
1 tsp cumin
1-2 tbsp fish sauce (optional – leave out if you want this to be vegan)
1 large onion, diced
2-3 large potatoes, cut into bite-sized chunks (you can peel them or not, whatever your preference is)
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1 14-oz can of coconut milk
1 green bell pepper, cut into large chunks
1/4 tsp ground ginger or 1-2 tsp finely diced fresh ginger
1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, finely chopped
1/4 cup sliced scallions
Salt and pepper to taste
If you are interested in making homemade curry paste, you can use the recipe from this post, or you can use our modifications to make it simpler: basically replace the seeds and fresh herbs like lemongrass with ground or dried spices and herbs, and adjust the amounts somewhat to take that into account. You can pretty much wing it in terms of amounts of most of this stuff, and it will probably turn out fine.
So, start off by adding some oil to a large pot. Heat that up a bit and then add the curry paste, cumin, and fish sauce if you’re using it. Cook for a couple minutes.
Add the potatoes, onion, and garlic, and stir around so the spices coat the vegetables pretty well.
Sauté this for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally so that nothing sticks to the bottom of the pot too badly. Then add the coconut milk, and cook for another 5 minutes or so.
Add the pepper and ginger, and bring the pot to a simmer. Cover and let it cook for about 40 minutes (you’ll need longer if you’re doing this with meat), stirring occasionally and checking the potatoes for doneness. If you want to serve this with rice, now might be a good time to get that going, depending on how much rice you are planning to make.
When the potatoes seem like they are almost ready (about 5 minutes away, if we want to be precise), stir in the cilantro and scallions. Let it finish cooking, and serve over your rice, if you went that route.
December 2, 2011 § Leave a comment
J: Pad Thai is absolutely one of my favorite dishes ever. I have to make a ridiculous effort not to order it at every Thai restaurant I ever go to, since there are so many other delicious Thai dishes — but this one has a special place in my heart. When Erik and I had some beansprouts left over from another dish, making Pad Thai popped into my head, and once the possibility of delicious homemade Pad Thai was within my reach, it was simply inevitable.
This dish blew my mind. I cannot even begin to communicate to you how absurdly delicious and shockingly easy it was to make something that will be, given one or two more go-rounds to tweak the sauce to perfection, the best Pad Thai I have ever had. If you have access to a Whole Foods or similar type of store, you can find everything you need for this (and if you have access to an Asian market type of place, you can probably find everything you need for way less money), and it is so, so worth it. We have posted over 100 recipes on this blog: this is easily, without question, in my top 3 highest-recommended recipes. It is fun, it is easy, it is interesting, and it is almost definitely both cheaper and healthier than what you’d get at a restaurant (not saying this is outright “healthy,” because it isn’t — but we’re speaking in relative terms here). « Read the rest of this entry »
March 13, 2011 § Leave a comment
E: There are some things I really, really love. And basil is one of them. I’m not entirely sure why, but basil and hot peppers were somehow made to go together. So I’m totally a sucker for Thai dishes that use these ingredients. This dish, which is very similar to the Country Style Chicken Basil that I’ve had in local Thai restaurants (but with ground chicken instead of the chicken strips, and minus the bell-peppers that dish seems to perennially have around here) is a particular favorite of mine.
January 23, 2011 § Leave a comment
E: So, some things to say before we begin. First, this recipe is quite good–with a tantalizing mixture of sweet and tangy and spicy–but honestly the lime is a bit too much. I have made the soup twice, and both times it was really good to start, but eventually got a little tiring. By the time I got to the end of my bowl, I didn’t like the soup as much as I did to start. And I also found it was impossible to eat cold or even mildly cool, so keep that in mind. The original recipe suggests tamarind paste instead of limes, and I really think that could be what this soup needs, but I haven’t had a chance to try it yet. If you do choose to use lime, consider keeping some of the lime juice used to soak the tofu out of the soup itself.
(And why haven’t I used tamarind paste yet? Because it is hard to find. Check your grocery store, but it may or may not be there–it wasn’t at mine, and I wasn’t in the mood to go elsewhere at the time. Try an Asian grocery store if you can’t find it wherever you normally shop–unless that is where you normally shop, and then congratulations, it is probably there–or get some online.)
Speaking of the original recipe, it is from Delicious Wisdom, a wonderful whole-food blog that appears to be no longer in existence. The pages still load, but appear totally blank. We have one or two other recipes from that site on this blog, and will likely have a few more, so same goes for them. If you need to find the original, I suggest searching for “Delicious Wisdom” “Thai Tofu Soup.” For now, at least, Google has a cached version.
So, if that hasn’t scared you away, we now turn to the soup itself. This is actually pretty easy. These amounts make enough for 5 or 6 small-ish portions, or 4 large portions (but as I said before this soup is best consumed in smaller amounts).