Quick & Easy Vegetarian Thai Green Curry
I wanted to share this recipe as I know mostly all of us are in a lockdown and we are trying to recreate the taste of almost everything we enjoyed eating out. While we wait for our beloved restaurants to come back in action, we can still enjoy some of the dishes to uplift our mood during such unprecedented times.
Thai food is usually enjoyed by almost everyone thanks to its resemblance to Indian food. It is filled with flavors, simple enough to make and exotic enough to serve on a weekend or a special night.
There are a lot of people who rely on store bought curry paste but I am going to help you with an easy version so that you can make the Thai curry paste right at your home like a boss without breaking a sweat. Trust me, the fresh ingredients make all the difference and a store bought paste can never be at par.
I have been making this for over half a decade now and the original recipe has been improvised to match the availability of the ingredients in Indian kitchen. I am also mentioning a couple of optional items, you can use them if you can find them else you can rely on the replacements. While original ingredients are preffreed, don't be disappointed if you can't find them. The replacement would be just fine.
Without further ado, let's dig right in.
INGREDIENTS FOR THE PASTE
1 bunch Fresh Coriander ~ 100 grams, wash thoroughly and chop roughly
2 tbps Coriander Seeds, roast them for a min on tawa
1 tbsp Cumin Seeds (jeera)
1 tbsp Black/ White Peppercorns
5-6 Fresh Coriander Roots (thicker ones if possible) , wash thoroughly
3-5 Green Chillies, chopped (Adjust the as per the level of spiciness)
6-7 Shallots (preferred) or 2 Small Sized Onions cut into 4 pieces
1 inch Galangal/ Thai Ginger (preferred) or regular Indian Ginger
2 inch Lemongrass Stalk; flattened & cut
5-7 Garlic Cloves
4-6 kaffir lime leaves (preferred) or Regular Lime Leaves
1 inch Fresh Turmeric (preferred), washed & peeled Or 1tsp Turmeric Powder
1 zest of Kaffir Lime, grated
2 sprigs Basil Leaves (optional)
3 whole Spring Onion - Bulb & Green (optional)
Salt to taste
INGREDIENTS FOR THE CURRY
1 tbsp Coconut/Palm/Groundnut Oil Or any preferred Oil
400-500 ml Coconut milk , unsweetened
1 cup Broccoli / Cauliflower florets
1 Carrot, sliced
3 Baby Corn, sliced long & thin
1 Red Yellow & Green Bell Pepper (Capsicum), diced
1/2 Green Zucchini, quartered or thickly sliced
1 cup Mushrooms
1/2 cup Haricot Green Beans
1 Onion thinly sliced
Any other Vegetable of your choice
1 cup Vegetable Stock (preferred) Or Water
1 sprig Basil leaves (preferred) Or kaffir lime leaves
Salt to taste
1 Red Paprika, sliced (optional)
1 tsp Lime Juice
A pinch of herbs
2 tsp brown sugar (optional)
Making The Paste
Let’s start by making the Green Thai Paste. Keep all the ingredients handy.
Start with Lemongrass. Cut out the root which is just below the bulb & remove the leaves too. We just need the tender stem. Remove a layer of two of the stem and you will see a good white cum green area. Keep the leaves aside, we will use them for making the rice.
Slice, chop and add all the ingredients to the blender and add little water so that the dry ingredients can be ground to a smooth paste. Start with very little water, adjust the consistency by adding more gradually, only if needed.
Keep the paste aside and we will now start making the curry.
To make the curry, heat oil in a heavy wok. Add the vegetables of your liking to it and stir fry them. You can also choose to par boil or steam the vegetables to make them tender easily. I usually like to parboil them before adding to the wok.
Transfer the parboiled vegetables to the wok. Add some salt and stir fry the vegetables till they are slightly tender. Transfer them to a bowl once they are done.
Add some oil in the hot wok and add the freshly prepared Thai Curry Paste and sauce it for a few minutes in the oil.
You would notice that the oil starts coming to the surface in a few minutes and that is when you add the coconut milk. You could also add a little water or vegetable stock depending on the consistency of gravy you like.
At this stage you can also choose to ad some brown sugar to adjust the level of spiciness. Add salt to taste. Keep stirring to combine the ingredients.I usually do not like to put sugar in my dishes and hence I refrain from it.
You can also add some lemon to adjust the pungency & add some tanginess. Allow the mixture to come to a boil and add some roughly torn or whole basil leaves. Stir the mixture and add it to the bowl of stir fried vegetables.
Pro-tip: Filter out the curry paste if you the paste doesn’t have the smooth consistency that you usually prefer.
Add some red paprika & herbs for garnishing.
Serve it with some Jasmine Rice. Jasmine rice is a fragrant little sticky and if you are not comfortable with it or if you do not have them handy, simply use the long grain Basmati Rice and add the knotted lemongrass leaves at the bottom to give a great fragrance to the rice.