I am a big fan of East Asian cuisine whether that be convenience sushi, underwhelming looking Vietnamese restaurants or greasy, hate-yourself Chinese takeaway at 2 in the morning. Having said that, I always shy away from making Asian food at home. In my head to make a proper stir-fry or a Vietnamese/ Thai curry I would either have to invest a vast amount of time and money sourcing all types of specialist ingredients, most of which come in bottles large enough to live in and which I would never use again; or give up and get it out of a Blue Dragon sachet, in which case I might as well sack the whole thing in and get a takeaway.
However, this is not always the case. In my search for more varied and interesting vegan and vegetarian dinner ideas I stumbled across a recipe for thai green curry which seemed to mostly use ingredients I already had (here is the original). And, being skint and lazy I decided to make substitutes for anything I didn’t have (eg. palm sugar). The end result was surprisingly easy to make and delicious. This recipe is really versatile so is great for using up any leftover veg and even those slightly more exotic ingredients can be bought fresh from most supermarkets meaning there is very little waste or extra cost.
Vegan Green Thai Curry (serves 2)
- 2 Stalks Lemon Grass
- Zest and Juice of Half a Lime
- 1 Thumb Sized Piece of Ginger
- 1 Green Chilli
- 2 Cloves of Garlic
- 1/2 an Onion
- 1 tsp Sugar
- 1 tsp Ground Coriander
- 1 tsp Cumin
- A Small Bunch of Fresh Coriander
- A Few Fresh Basil Leaves
- 1 Can of Coconut Milk
- A Selection of Green Veg- I used green beans, tender stem broccoli and courgette but asparagus, broad beans, normal broccoli and frozen peas would work equally well.
- Rice to serve.
How to Make it…
- Roughly chop the ginger, lemongrass, chilli, garlic and onion and transfer to a food processor along with the sugar, lime juice and zest, ground coriander, cumin, basil leaves and a couple of stalks of fresh coriander. Blend to a paste but add some vegetable oil if the mixture needs loosening a little.
- Fry the paste in a large pan for a minute or two before adding the coconut milk. Let the sauce simmer for a few minutes while you prepare the veg. Add the vegetables to the pan starting with the ones that will take the longest to cook. Meanwhile boil some rice.
- Once all of the vegetables are cooked serve the curry with the rice and garnish with any remaining coriander leaves.
Washing up rating **
I used… a knife, a chopping board, 2 pans, a wooden spoon and a food processor.
Cost Rating **
Total cost per portion: £2.25
(The total cost is based on the amount of each product used, buying all ingredients new will cost £11.10)