Saturday, January 28, 2012
Winter Vegetable Noodle Curry
After two years of begging and pleading to Jay (and then about five minutes of searching the web), The Bojon Gourmet now has a 'print friendly' button at the bottom of each individual post (not the main page with all the posts – to go to an individual post, click the recipe title). The happy, green button is located at the very end of the post, after the recipe and final photo. When you click it, you can delete anything you don't want printed – just hover over the photo or paragraph and click. To remove all the images, click the 'remove images' box at the top.
And what better recipe to print out than this easy, gluten-free, vegan, one-pot meal?
This is the dish we've been enjoying regularly for the past couple of months. It was inspired by a meal I enjoyed at Spice Monkey, an adorable cafe in Oakland with an eclectic menu inspired by foods from around the globe. As we partook of their excellent beer and wine selection served up by friendly staff, I reveled in a steaming bowl of fragrant coconut milk broth teaming with vibrant vegetables and slippery noodles. When we left, I knew I would either have to re-create the recipe or begin spending more time in the East Bay. (Like, every night.)
Luckily for Jay and my bank account, I found a recipe in Heidi Swanson's Super Natural Cooking for a 'slurp and slop bowl of noodles' that looked like a winning springboard recipe. I omitted the tofu, doubled the broth, and added in a jumble of vegetables.
The result is a messy bowl of spiced broth, stained yellow with turmeric and Thai red chile paste, creamy from light and full-fat coconut milks, tangy from a generous dose of lime. The ample vegetables cook right in the broth until crisp-tender, and noodles added to the bowl just before serving stay chewy-soft. The curry is light and nourishing all at once, leaving you satisfied yet energized.
While my favorite version uses colorful carrots, broccoli, savoy cabbage and cauliflower (which turns bright gold from the turmeric), I also made a tasty version with bok choy, romanesco and baby turnips – pesky vegetables from our CSA that I previously never knew how to use.
If you have a case of the winter vegetable blahs and find yourself pining for the asparagus and peas which are not yet in season, the bright flavors in this lively curry may assuage your longing.
And you don't even have to cross the bridge (or copy and paste) to enjoy it.
Oodles of noodles:
Creamy Sesame Soba Noodles
Mac and Cheese with Winter Squash, Bacon and Collard Greens
Pasta Alla Carbonara
One year ago:
Butterscotch Pudding (I just made this the other night with a shot of bourbon stirred in at the end - highly recommended!)
Two years ago:
Citrus Cornmeal Pound Cake
Winter Vegetable Curry with Rice Noodles
Inspired by Super Natural Cooking
My curry paste wasn't very spicy, and this curry turned out completely mild; taste yours to determine how much spice you want in your curry, and add extra chile, or a bit of Sriracha hot sauce, for more heat if you like. Feel free to add 8 - 12 ounces of extra-firm tofu along with the vegetables. And speaking of vegetables, try any combination you like, taking cooking times into consideration – I've successfully used bok choy, thinly sliced baby turnips and romanesco in place of the ones suggested below.
This curry keeps well for several days, but don't add the noodles until just before serving; otherwise, they will drink up all the broth, and then disintegrate before making it into your mouth. Thai red curry paste and coconut milk can be found in the Asian section of most grocery stores.
Makes 6 - 8 servings
2 tablespoons extra-virgin coconut oil or sunflower oil
1 large yellow onion, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Thai red curry paste
1/2 pound carrots, scrubbed and thinly sliced diagonally
1/2 pound broccoli, in bite-sized florets
1/2 pound cauliflower, in bite-sized florets
1/2 pound green cabbage (preferably savoy or napa)
1 can light coconut milk
1 can regular coconut milk
4 cups vegetable stock (I use 2 cubes of Rapunzel bouillon and 4 cups water)
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 tablespoons sugar
tamari or soy sauce to taste
juice of 1-2 limes
8 ounces Asian-style rice noodles
a bit of vegetable oil for tossing the noodles (such as sunflower)
a big handful of cilantro, washed well and chopped
In a large wok or dutch oven, heat the oil over a medium flame. Add the onion and garlic, and saute for a few minutes until translucent and softened. Add the curry paste and cook for a few more minutes, stirring constantly, until fragrant. Add the vegetables and give them a turn to coat them in oil. Add the coconut milks, stock, turmeric and sugar. (It will seem like not enough liquid, but the vegetables will shrink and release water as they cook.) Increase the heat to bring the curry to a simmer, then lower the heat to maintain a simmer and cook until the vegetables are crisp-tender, about 10 minutes. Add tamari and lime juice to taste.
Cook the noodles according to the package instructions, drain, rinse with cool water to prevent stickage, and toss with a bit of vegetable oil.
To serve, place a nest of noodles in a bowl and top with the curry and broth, and a sprinkling of cilantro. Serve with extra lime wedges and Sriracha, if desired, and both chopsticks and soup spoons for easy eating.