Thursday, August 7, 2008

Quick Dish - Kitchen Sink Veggie Curry

Ok, so this quick dish might not be ready in five minutes, but it’s totally worth the 20-30 it takes to prepare. It’s a great way to use up any of those expensive farmers market vegetables you don’t know what to do with, and while it requires a few unique ingredients, if you’ve ever attempted any kind of Asian cooking you most likely have all this stuff in your fridge anyway. Plus, you can stretch any leftover curry sauce into a second meal just by adding some cooked rice noodles (and shrimp if you’re carnivorously inclined). Think of it as two quick dishes in one. Enjoy!

For the curry sauce:
2 cups chicken stock
1 can (14 oz) coconut milk
2-3 tablespoons red curry paste – or more depending on your heat preference
¼ cup of julienned ginger
3 tbsp canned chopped lemongrass
1 tsp salt
1 lime
1 tbsp brown sugar
Few dashes of hot sauce

For the veggies:
Really, you can use just about anything you have on hand. Below is a random combo I tried recently and really liked. Sugar snap peas, eggplant, squash (think pattypan or zucchini), mushrooms and bok choy would work nicely, too.

Several handfuls of grape tomatoes
1 can o’ green beans
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled, nuked until cooked through but still firm, and cubed
1-2 handfuls of basil leaves, torn

For the rice:
1 cup jasmine rice
1 ¼ cups water

Place all curry ingredients in a large sauté pan. (For the lime, slice it in half, squeeze the juice into the pan, and then toss in the halves). Stir together, bring to a boil and let simmer for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, rinse the rice and add it to a saucepan with the water. Bring the rice to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover, and let simmer for 15 minutes, or until all the water is evaporated. When the 20 minutes is up on the curry, strain the sauce, return it to the pan and add the vegetables. Cook until heated through. Serve over the rice.

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