I love green curry. This is not a new fact.
I probably make the stuff at least twice a week, so I wasn’t going to let Veganuary hold me back.
In my typical green curry, I’ll add chicken, courgettes and peppers, using a traditional paste bought from an Asian supermarket, with coconut milk, chicken stock, tamarind sauce, lime and herbs. After watching a recent Come Dine With Me episode where one participant didn’t make her own paste, diners furiously marked her down. I agree, that if hosting a dinner party on national TV, I’d probably go the extra mile and mash the herbs and spices together with a pestle and mortar to win them over, but after a long day at work, if I’m after a quick dish, a pre-made paste is fine by me.
My usual paste is simply titled ‘Green Curry Paste’, which I bought from a traditional Asian supermarket. It’s naturally GF, nice and spicy, and keeps in the fridge for ages. However, unfortunately my go-to paste contains ‘shrimp paste’, so that was a no go for Veganuary. Also keep a look out for any added ‘fish sauce.’
After a good old hunt in Waitrose, I found Thai Taste which, *praise the Lord* was vegan! This meant, that with a few extra veggies, green curry and I would be reunited again.
A couple of tips when buying ingredients –
- I’d totally avoid any liquid jar pastes that suggest you to use half a jar. Your paste should be ‘paste like’, quite sticky and solid. Have a little look in the Asian aisle of your supermarket.
- Hunt around for a cheaper coconut milk. Tesco will have own brand coconut milk and fancy brands that cost double the price of a traditional tin. In a local Tesco in Lewisham, I can get 2 tins for £1, so don’t be fooled by the packaging! If you’re not sure, ask a member of staff if there’s another aisle they could be in. I’ve found Sainsbury’s and Tesco two have two different aisles where coconut milk could be found.
Quick Vegan Green Curry
What you need:
2-3 tsp green curry paste*
1/2 tsp coconut oil/ or splash of olive oil
1 tin coconut milk
1 Knorr veggie stockpot or standard veggie stock cube**
200ml boiling water***
1/2 an aubergine
4 baby corn
1 red or orange pepper
1 tsp tamarin sauce
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 a lime
Handful of coriandar
*Depending on brand and how spicy you like your curry
** If you’re not using Knorr, double check this is vegan. Veggie cubes often still contain milk.
*** I like my curry more soup like, but if you prefer more of a thicker more ‘sauce’ like consistency, reduce to 100ml.
- On a low heat simmer the curry paste with a small swirl of olive oil or coconut oil if you have it. Pour in the tin of coconut milk, stir and leave for a few minutes to simmer. (If I’m using my traditional paste, I only need 1 tsp as it’s super hot, but with this particular brand I’d say you need 2-3 tsp with some added chilli later on. Depending on which brand you go for, I’d start with 1 tsp, stir in and test once the liquid is hot. That way you can always add more).
- Add the stock cube along with roughly 200ml of water. I’m a fan of more of a soup style curry, so 200ml of water works well. If you prefer a creamier sauce, use 100ml of water, but your liquid base won’t go as far.
- Stir and keep on a low-medium heat, making sure the liquid doesn’t start to boil.
- Chop your aubergine, courgette, baby corn and pepper into small chunks and throw into the broth.
- Add the tamarin sauce (or standard soy sauce if you’re not gluten free), chilli powder and squeeze in the juice of half a lime. Once you’ve squeezed out the lime juice, throw the remaining skin and flesh (from that half) into the broth. It poaches really nicely and goes lovely and soft in the heat.
- Stir and leave to simmer on a medium heat for roughly 20-30 minutes. Your veggies should be lovely and soft.
- Serve in large bowls with coriandar and chilli flakes.
I like to have a bowl of brown rice separately. Soup like curries tend to be served better apart from rice rather than all mushed together, but that’s my preference!