stories of life & wanderlust

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Inspired by Thailand: My Take on Massaman Curry



I don’t know what’s going on with me lately, but at the moment I honestly feel like I could sleep for twenty hours a day! I blame it on the weird weather we’ve been having in Heidelberg – terribly stiffling heat that makes you want to hide away from the world – but now that looking out of the window finally shows grey skies again – this is no sarcasm, guys! – I can hopefully finally be productive again and share one of my recent favorite recipes with you!

My boyfriend and me absolutely love the taste of Thai cuisine because Thai food never ever tastes bland or boring and always strikes the perfect balance of spicy, sweet, sour and salty flavors which quite literally explode in your mouth. I had a lot of great dishes when I visited Thailand last summer and I also love going to Thai restaurants here in Europe, but since my boyfriend is a vegetarian and pretty much every Thai dish traditionally contains fish sauce, I also cook a lot of Thai food at home.




When we were in Chiang Mai, the vegetarian foodie paradise in Thailand, we took a veg-friendly cooking class and it was fun to not only be introduced to some new dishes, but also to learn how to put a vegetarian spin on some Thai classics. I unfortunately misplaced (I refuse to say lost!) the little cooking book that we were given during the class, but I don't think I will ever forget the perfectly pungent flavors of Thailand!

It was also in Chiang Mai that we were first properly introduced to Massaman Curry. Massaman Curry is a particularly hearty Thai Curry that not only contains different vegetables, but also potatoes which makes the curry wonderfully filling and satisfying. This curry is traditionally often made with beef, but we also had some great vegetarian versions that inspired me to come up with my own take on this dish and the result has quickly become a firm favorite.




I obviously can’t claim to know how to make super authentic Thai food, but I do like to think that I have learned how to make a pretty tasty curry nonetheless and I hope that this recipe will inspire you to create your own personal take on Massaman Curry and to make it your own as well!

Ingredients

½ head of cauliflower
2 handfuls of button mushroom
350g Potatoes
200g Tofu
150ml Coconut Milk
2 tablespoons of yellow curry paste
Juice of ½ a lime
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon Garam Masala (or your favorite Indian Curry Powder)
Soy Sauce
Roasted Peanuts & Spring Onion for Garnish



1. Wash and peel your potatoes and then chop them into mouth-sized pieces. Add them to a pot of cold salted water, bring to a boil and cook until tender, which should take between ten and fifteen minutes.

2. While the potatoes cook, prepare your other ingredients: You can use whatever vegetables you like and whatever is regional and seasonal to you! Just chop the tofu into cubes and your vegetables into bite-sized pieces.

3. Add a tablespoon of vegetable oil to a large frying pan and sauté the tofu until it's golden brown and slightly crispy. Season to taste with a bit of salt and set to the side.

4. Wipe the pan clean, then add another tablespoon of oil and the curry paste. Curry paste is available in most supermarkets nowadays, but make sure you use one that doesn’t contain fish sauce or shrimp paste if you want to keep the dish vegetarian. I like my food to be very spicy, so I use at least two tablespoons, but feel free to adjust the amount if you prefer a milder taste!




5. Saut̩ the curry paste until fragrant Рyour kitchen should smell fantastic right about now! Рand then add a little bit of the coconut milk to loosen up the mixture.

6. Add your vegetables and stir until every piece is covered in the curry paste. Lower the heat and cook the veggies until they are tender - if the pan becomes too dry just add a little bit of water to keep them from burning. Once you’re happy with how the veggies are cooked, add the cooked potatoes, tofu and the rest of the coconut milk.

7. Now comes the fun part: Making this dish your own with the seasoning! Thai food is all about finding the perfect balance between salty, sweet, sour and spicy and since it all depends on your personal preferences, it’s pretty much impossible to give precise measurements for the sugar, lime juice, soy sauce (used instead of fish sauce) and curry powder that give the dish its fantastic flavor. Use the measurements above as a guideline and keep on tasting the curry and adding the seasoning to it until you're happy with the taste!

8. Sprinkle with chopped spring onions and roasted peanuts to provide some more texture before eating. You can also serve the curry with rice, but I find it hearty enough by itself!



I hope you enjoyed this recipe post! I still feel a bit intimidated by the idea of posting recipes on my blog, but I really do love cooking and being in the kitchen, so maybe this will become a more regular occurrence! And in the meantime:

What is your favorite dish at the moment?


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