I’ve been feeling in a bit of a recipe slump these days. Even though our trip to Hawaii inspired me in a couple of very tasty ways, the dishes were not in the main meal department. Instead, since we’ve been back, I’ve been turning to my favourite tried and true recipes instead of trying new things. All of this is totally normal and fine, except when you are trying to run a food blog. Luckily, last week I had a meeting right next to a very large Asian supermarket and I decided to stop in for a couple of things that we can’t normally get our hands on. While perusing the produce aisle, I saw some fresh lime leaves, which I have never used before. Needless to say, they made me very excited and I knew my slump was over (for now).
This morning I gathered the lime leaves and a bunch of other ingredients I picked up at the store, including, lemongrass, thai basil, cilantro, coconut milk and a nice green chile. I haven’t made green curry before but I knew I couldn’t go wrong with all of those tasty, bright ingredients. So, at 9 a.m., I got all of those aromats simmering together with some baby eggplants, added some fish sauce for funk, brown sugar for sweetness and some lime juice for sour brightness and ended up with a perfectly balanced, super flavorful curry. Keep in mind that this curry is very mild and pretty sweet. Of course, if you prefer something a little more spicy, add some chilli to your own taste.
To bulk it up I added a few handfuls of gai lan, a mild, tender green and some crisped up, firm tofu. The eggplant ended up melt-in-your-mouth soft, just the way I like it. Of course, I made some coconut rice to pile all of the saucy goodness of the curry on top of. If you’ve never had coconut rice before, you have to try it. All you have to do is replace half of the liquid you are cooking your rice in with coconut milk and you have rice that is full of coconut flavor, which makes it slightly sweet. It pairs especially well with this curry. It’s a perfectly satisfying, healthy meal and it actually comes together really quickly once you get all of the ingredients, which are actually completely common at any Asian grocery store, and even some well-stocked generic grocery stores. The only thing that may be a little harder to get your hands on are the lime leaves, but you can replace them (even though it’s not 100% the same) with big pieces of lime zest.
If you are strictly vegetarian or vegan, omit the fish sauce. Fish sauce has a very unique flavor and adds saltiness and savouriness to the dish. You can replace it with a bit of soya sauce for the saltiness, but it won't taste exactly the same.
Using 1/2 green chilli will keep this curry very, very mild. Adjust according to your preference (and also the heat of your particular curry).
Blending the cilantro with a splash of water and adding it to the curry is what will give it it's green colour, so don't skip that step!
In a blender, blend cilantro with a splash of water until smooth.
Mix blended cilantro, eggplants, chilli, water, coconut milk, fish sauce, lime leaves, thai basil, lemongrass and brown sugar in a large pan.
Simmer vigorously, uncovered for 20-25 minutes.
In the meantime, cook your rice. By bringing the rice, coconut milk, water and salt to a simmer and simmer covered for ten minutes. Remove from heat and keep covered for 10 more minutes. Uncover and fluff rice.
While the rice is cooking you can pan fry your tofu.
Drain tofu of any water and pat dry.
Slice into slices 1/2 inch thick.
In a medium pan, over medium-high heat, heat up a splash of neutral oil.
Fry tofu until golden brown (about 2-3 minutes each side).
Slice into sticks and set tofu aside.
Once eggplant is tender (about 20-25 minutes of simmering) add gai lan and simmer another couple of minutes.
Add fried tofu to the curry.
Add the juice of half a lime to the curry.
Serve green curry over rice.
Thai Green Curry was last modified: March 30, 2015 by