If you don’t – you should. No judgment.
Thai food has never been my favorite – I don’t crave it like I do a bowl of pho, banh mi, sushi/sashimi/nigiri, or just a plain bowl of kim chi jigae.
However, when the mood strikes – I want it pretty badly. Usually either a larb salad or panang. (Never pad thai – I don’t like peanuts or peanut butter in my savory food. No judgment, please.)
And the mood struck. Yesterday. For dinner.
Well, it struck before when I was at Sprouts getting my bulk shopping on (20% off sale – HOLLA!), and saw a jar of Thai Red Curry when I wandered to the “International” aisle. I was getting tired of the guy that had his cart in the middle of the grains isle, leaving no room for others, and would not leave the area. No judgment, sir.
- 1 package extra firm tofu, cut into cubes (take as much water out as possible)
- 4 tbsp sesame oil (you can use olive oil but sesame gives this dish a great flavor), divided
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1/2 cup onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp ginger, minced – I have tried it with ginger powder and it was fine, not perfect but fine
- 1 tbsp chopped basil – I have tried it with dried basil and it was fine, not perfect but fine.
- 1 jalapeno pepper, minced (optional)
- 3 tbsp Thai red curry/panang paste
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp coriander
- 1 can coconut milk
- 1/2 can of water – read on
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced into strips
- 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and sliced into strips
- 1/2 cup carrots sliced into sticks
- 1 package mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
- 2 tbsp fish sauce (if you don’t want to use this, use soy sauce or tamari), or to taste
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tsp chopped cilantro.
- Heat pan over medium-high heat.
- Add 2 tbsp oil and heat.
- Add tofu to pan and season with salt and pepper.
- Fry tofu until browned on all sides.
- Remove the tofu from pan and set aside.
- Heat remaining 2 tbsp of oil.
- Saute onions, garlic, ginger, and pepper, until tender – about 7 minutes over medium-high heat.
- Add curry paste, cumin and coriander, and heat with the onions until cooked through and the raw smell is gone – about 1 minutes.
- Add basil and mix in with curry paste combo for about 10 seconds.
- Add salt.
- Pour full can of coconut milk into the pan.
- Fill 1/2 of the now empty coconut milk can with water and pour into mixture.
- Stir to combine and bring the whole mixture to a boil.
- Once boiling, add red & yellow bell pepper, carrots & mushrooms.
- Bring to a boil – approximately 10 minutes.
- Add tofu and turn heat down to medium-low.
- Let it simmer for approximately 10 minutes.
- Add fish sauce and lemon juice; mix until incorporated.
- Simmer for another 10 minutes.
- Serve over jasmine rice.
- Garnish with cilantro. Serve with wedges of lime or lemon (optional).
Note: BE CAREFUL with the fish sauce. If it spills even an iota within a 5 mile radius, your skin, clothes and life will be ruined for a full week. I speak from experience.
Do you enjoy Thai food? Do you cook it? Have you spilled fish sauce on yourself?