Wednesday, May 09, 2007

My Thai

I've had an open jar of green curry paste knocking about in my refrigerator for a while, so I was motivated to use it this week. This is basically a veggie stir-fry without the fry (for the most part), served over whole-wheat fettucine. Rice noodles would have been more authentic, but I had to get in my whole grains.

Anyone could throw this together with whatever was begging to be used up in their crisper bins. Cabbage would have been lovely. As this was an improvisation, I'll point out where I could have improved:

Sauce was too thin! I added a whole can of chicken broth so I could be sure the veggies would have enough simmering liquid. Next time, I'll scale back on the broth (alterations made in this recipe). Also, might not hurt to stir in a bit of corn starch to thicken it up. "Lite" coconut milk does not have the body of the full-fat variety.

In spite of this, the flavor was nice, spicy and a bit creamy, with crisp peas and juicy peppers and onions. Maybe I've got warm-weather fever, but this seems like a great summer night dinner!

Green Curry Thai Stir-Fry
1 T. vegetable oil
1 block firm tofu, patted dry and cubed
1 lb. whole-wheat fettucine
2-3 T. Thai green curry paste
1/2 can "lite" coconut milk
1/2 can chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 large onion, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 yellow bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, halved
1/2-1 cup sugar snap peas
Generous handful cilantro, chopped
Fish sauce or soy sauce, for serving (optional)

Cook fettucine according to package instructions. Try to time it so the pasta is finished at approximately the same time as the sauce.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the tofu, stirring, until golden (7-10 minutes or so). Remove tofu to a plate, set aside. Add curry paste to skillet, stirring, for about 30 seconds. Stir in coconut milk and broth. Bring to a simmer. Add onion, bell pepper, and mushrooms. Cook, uncovered, until veggies are tender (5-7 minutes). Stir in peas, cook 1 minute longer. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro. Serve over pasta, sprinkled with fish sauce (preferred) or soy sauce (for you vegetarians), if desired.

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