Recipe: Vegan Green Curry

I have a thing for green curry. It's my standard whenever we go out to Thai. In an attempt to be cheap and ditch the usual takeout, I bought a small jar of curry paste and made a lackluster dish of my own. It was very mild even after I doubled the amount of curry paste in the recipe, and too sweet for my liking. There had to be a good curry recipe out there that would make my tastebuds sing, perhaps even in my stash of cookbooks.

I have this great cookbook from Rebar in Victoria that I often find friends asking for recipes from for this dish or that. It never disappoints. Their curry had just the right amount of heat without being overly spicy, and a very fresh taste and a lemongrass tang. I'll admit it was a little bit more fuss to prepare than I usually like for a weeknight, but as our dinner guests said "it was worth the wait".

Green Curry Paste

Yields 1 ½ cups

1 Tbsp whole coriander
2 tsp cumin seed
2 tsp black pepper corns
4 garlic cloves
1 oz ginger or galangal
½ cup chopped shallots
2 jalapeno peppers, with seeds
2 lemongrass stalks
4 scallions
½ tsp red chile flakes
1 bunch cilantro
Juice of 1 lime
1 Tbsp salt
½ cup peanut oil

Toast the coriander, cumin and peppercorns in a hot, dry skillet until fragrant. Cool and grind to a fine powder.

Slice off the root ends and the top two-thirds of the lemongrass stalks. Peel away the outer layer of the remaining bottom pieces and discard the trimmings. Roughly chop the lemon grass. Combine all of the ingredients, including the ground spices, in a food processor. Pulse several times and stop to scrape down the sides. Puree to a smooth paste. Transfer to a clean jar and refrigerate until ready to use.

Monk’s Curry

Serves 4

1 recipe sesame baked tofu (used plain extra firm tofu, pressed to release water)
1 can coconut milk
4 Tbsp green curry paste
6 fresh kaffir lime leaves, stemmed and shredded
¼ cup stock or water
2 red potatoes, 1/8” thick quarter-moon slices (used Kabocha squash instead)
1 Tbsp palm or brown sugar
2 Tbsp soy sauce
4 Tbsp fish sauce (omit & use soy for vegan)
2 Japanese eggplants, half-moon slices
½ lb oyster mushrooms, sliced
4 baby bok choy, leaves separated
2 bunches scallions, 1-inch long slices
Juice of 1 lime
1/3 cup Thai basil leaves or cilantro, chopped
¼ cup peanuts, roasted and chopped

Heat a wok over medium heat and add 13 can coconut milk. Heat to a simmer and add the curry paste. Work the paste into the coconut milk to thoroughly combine. Add lime leaves and stock and bring to a boil. Add the potatoes, cover and cook at a gentle simmer until the potatoes are just tender.

Stir in the palm sugar, soy and fish sauce, eggplant, mushrooms and remaining coconut milk. Cover and continue to simmer until all the vegetables are tender.

Turn up the heat and add the tofu, bok choy and scallions. Simmer until the bok choy wilts and the sauce reduces and thickens.

Just before serving, stir in the lime juice, basil or cilantro and season to taste with more fish or soy sauce. Serve with jasmine rice garnished with roasted peanuts, chopped fresh cilantro and lime wedges.

2 Responses so far.

  1. Onica says:

    I love a green curry. It's so worth the time that goes into it. Even for a weeknight. And think of how much money you saved and how many more ingredients you have for next time you want to make it!

  2. Keisha says:

    This looks really tasty...