There are days when even I don’t feel like cooking. That’s where Thai curry comes in. In less time than it takes takeout to reach your door, you can have this dish on your table. I dig it because nearly every ingredient can be swapped out for something you like or that’s in season. After sautéing a few onions on the stove, you pour it all into a pot and walk away for 20 minutes until it’s ready to be spooned over rice or cauliflower rice. Bonus points for not having to worry about what you’re having for lunch the next day.
Cooking oil (Coconut is great for this, for obvious reasons)
Onion, diced or sliced—whatever you like!
Garlic, however many cloves you want, minced on a grater
Ginger, minced on a grater, about the same amount as the garlic
A spicy chile, seeds removed and chopped small (Thai is awesome, serrano or jalapeno is also great)
A can of coconut milk
A jar of curry paste (I like red, but you can go green or yellow)
1 Tbsp Fish Sauce
2 Tbsp sweetener (I like coconut sugar, but you can use regular sugar, honey, maple syrup, etc)
1 lb of your favorite protein (Chicken, shrimp, pork, beef, tofu)
2-3 cups of fresh vegetables, sliced or chopped to a similar size (Like: shiitake mushrooms, snap peas, eggplant, potatoes, bell peppers, radishes, or whatever! I just wouldn’t use any watery vegetables like lettuce or cucumber. Make sure it can hold up to the heat!)
Heat your oil over medium-high in a big pot. Once it’s warm and flowing around the pot easily, add the onions and sprinkle a pinch of salt over top of them. Let them cook for 5 minutes or so, or until they smell delicious. Add garlic, ginger and your chile of choice. Sauté for 30 seconds to a minute.
Add coconut milk, two heaping spoonfuls of curry paste, fish sauce and sugar. You may need to get in there with a whisk to help break up any large chunks of coconut cream. Once the liquid is smooth add your protein (sliced thin for chicken, pork or beef) and any veggies that may take longer to cook (things like potatoes, eggplant, carrots—basically anything you would bite into raw with care). Bring to a boil and then lower to a simmer. Let it bubble for about 15 minutes, then add any quick cooking veggies (peas, mushrooms, peppers, etc) and let cook for 5 minutes more.
Taste the vegetables for doneness. If they need a little more time, there’s no harm in that. Once they’re done to your liking, pull the pot off the heat and add in heaps of chopped basil. I truly don’t think you can overdo it here. Squeeze a lime or two into the finished curry to brighten it up. Add a little salt if the flavors still taste dull to you.
Pile into bowls over rice or cauliflower rice and top with extra basil, scallions, and lime wedges. Pat yourself on the back for not ordering takeout.