For an easy meal, I highly recommend keeping a couple of kinds of curry paste on hand.
I know, I know, this is a food blog and I should be more authentic and make it from scratch, but there are prepared Thai curry pastes out there that are pretty tasty. I won’t go into each brand but please go to your local Asian market and test a few different brands and varieties. I’d recommend avoiding the ones at your local supermarket; I’m not sure if those are ‘Americanized’ or not but they don’t have nearly as much flavor (at least in my experience).
For this meal, I wanted to use up all the random vegetables I had hanging around – a can of baby corn that I didn’t remember buying, what I had left of a bag of green beans, a red bell pepper threatening to go bad and some of the carrot chips I always keep on hand for snacking and instances just like this.
Green curry paste is a mix of green chilies, garlic, shallots, galangal, lemongrass, kaffir lime and spices; ingredients that can be hard to get fresh here so buying the ready-made is a great compromise when I don’t feel like driving 45 minutes to the local international grocery store.
Throw in a can of light coconut milk along with some chicken or vegetable stock and it’s a guaranteed delicious dish.
- 1 1/2 Tbsp oil (I love using coconut oil here but grapeseed or peanut would also be good)
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 – 4 Tbsp Thai green curry paste (depending on how spicy/bold you want the flavor to be) Note – I use the whole 4 oz container because I love the flavor. I’ve even been known to throw in some chopped jalapeno or crushed red pepper to make it extra spicy.
- 1 (14 oz) can light coconut milk
- ½ cup stock (chicken or vegetable)
- 2 Tbsp fish sauce
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 lb green beans, ends snapped off and snapped in half
- 1 large red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
- 1 cup of carrot coins/chips (I’d use a large carrot thinly sliced if you don’t keep those on hand)
- 1 (14 oz can) baby corn
- 2 Tbsp of cornstarch mixed with 2 Tbsp of water
- 2 Tbsp lime juice
- 2 Tbsp fresh minced cilantro
- Heat oil over medium high heat in a deep skillet or wok. Add onion and cook for 3 – 4 minutes until softened. Add in garlic and curry paste, cook, stirring continuously until fragrant (1 - 2 minutes). Pour coconut milk, stock, fish sauce and brown sugar and mix until well combined.
- Add green beans, red bell pepper and carrots and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low, cover and simmer for 12 minutes or until vegetables have softened.
- Increase heat to medium-high. Add in the baby corn and cornstarch slurry, mixing well and cook 3 – 4 minutes or until sauce and slightly thickened. Stir in lime juice then taste and adjust seasoning (you may need a bit more fish sauce, sugar or lime juice – all the flavors should be balanced).
- Serve over hot cooked rice and garnish with cilantro.