I remember the first time I tried Thai food: yellow curry with chicken and potatoes; spicy seafood soup with lemongrass; spicy green curry with shrimp. I had never tasted curry, coconut milk or lemongrass and suddenly a whole new dawn of Far Eastern indulgence lied ahead of me. This is when I realized other cultures had so much to offer on the culinary front.
This classic Thai curry recipe, which marries the flavors of coconut milk, lemongrass and green chilies, is the best green curry I have come across to date. Although it is easier to buy green curry paste, the extra 5 or 10 minutes it takes to make your own is well worth it. Firm tofu or seitan can be used instead of shrimp for a vegetarian version. Serve with whole grain rice.
Thai Green Curry Shrimp
1 bunch of asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2" pieces
1/2 - 1 fresh red chili pepper, halved, seeded and diced
1 T peanut oil
1 T sesame oil
1 pound wild shrimp, raw, peeled, tails removed
1 14 oz can of coconut milk
a handful of snow peas
and for the curry:
2 stalks of lemongrass, trimmed, outer leaves removed and central stalks crushed with a rolling pin and then coarsely chopped
4 scallions, chopped
3 fresh green chilies, halved, seeded and chopped
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
a thumb size piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
1 bunch of cilantro
1 t coriander
3 T soy sauce
1 T fish sauce (found in the Asian section of our grocery store)
To make the curry paste:
Set aside a few sprigs of cilantro and process the rest along with the lemongrass stalks, scallions, green chilies, garlic, ginger and coriander in a food processor. Add the soy sauce and fish sauce and process again to form a paste. Set aside.
To make the curry:
Place a large saute pan or wok over high heat and add the peanut and sesame oils, swirling to evenly coat the pan. Drop in the shrimp . Add the asparagus and green curry and stir fry for 30 seconds. Pour in the coconut milk and add the snow peas. Stir, bring to a boil and cook for a few minutes. Add lime juice and stir. Top with chopped red diced chilies and reserved cilantro leaves.
Serve with fluffy white rice for a traditional meal or go healthier and serve with brown rice or your favorite whole grain.
Serves 2 or 4, depending on your appetite.
Source: Jamie Oliver, Jamie's Food Revolution