Thursday, December 13, 2012

Vegan Curry Rice Noodles

spicy coco-nutty deliciousness:
Thai Red Curry Coconut Rice Noodles

Medium vermicelli rice stick.
Thai basil, lime and red curry paste.

I'm not going to pretend to have made my own red curry paste here or anything. That's a culinary line I have yet to cross. Soon, but not yet. What I am going to do is tell you that I've found a brand of fantastic Thai curry pastes that DO NOT CONTAIN SHRIMP PASTE. If you're vegetarian or vegan and have ever shopped for curry paste you'll understand what a big deal this is. The brand is MaeSri; they make a variety of Thai curry pastes, including Red, Green and Massaman, all of which are vegan friendly. The cans are small at 4oz, but a little bit goes a very long way; this recipe only calls for 1tbsp. 
Simply keep the remaining paste refrigerated in a sealed glass jar for future use: it will keep for at least 6 months. The Red curry paste, my favorite, contains only chili, garlic, shallots, salt, sugar, lemongrass, kaffir lime and spices. It seems to be a fairly popular brand, I've seen it in a number of Asian groceries in my area. If you're lucky enough to have an Asian grocery close by you'll want to hit it up for this recipe. Trust me when I say it will be your best and cheapest option for ingredients like rice stick, ginger root, sesame oil, limes, coconut milk, Thai basil and of course curry paste.  
If you're unable to find this brand locally, you can purchase it online here: 

This recipe makes a rich and flavorful coconut based curry; the rice noodles are the delivery system. I like mine topped with a healthy handful of Thai basil and a wedge of lime. I enjoy this as a straight-up noodle dish, but occasionally add in whatever vegetables are on hand. If you do decide to add veggies make sure they are cut small enough to cook quickly and mix easily into the curry and noodles.
MaeSri Red Curry Paste. 

Vegan Thai Red Curry Coconut Rice Noodles:
serves 4

You will need:
1tbsp sesame oil or canola oil
1 tsp freshly grated ginger root
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 small garlic clove, finely minced
1 lime, half juiced and half reserved for garnish
1 tbsp red curry paste
1 15oz can unsweetened light coconut milk 
(You can use full fat instead, I just prefer the light)
1lb rice stick noodles, I recommend medium to thick rice stick.

1 - 1 1/2 cup of vegetables such as thinly sliced carrots, broccoli or cabbage (optional)
Thai basil for garnish (optional)

Red curry rice noodles topped with Thai basil and a lime wedge. 

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil and cook rice noodles according to instructions.
*Drain and set aside when finished, keeping covered so noodles do not clump and stick.

If adding vegetables to your curry have them washed cut and ready to go.

In a large saute pan heat the sesame oil over medium heat. 
Add diced onion, cook for 2-3 minutes , stirring frequently, 
until they begin to become translucent.
Add minced garlic and ginger, stir, cooking for 1-2 minutes more. 
Add curry paste, stirring to combine, and cook for one minute more. 
Add in coconut milk, using a whisk to incorporate all ingredients.
optional: Add vegetables to coconut milk mixture and cook for 5 minutes more.
Turn off heat.
Add lime juice.
Add cooked noodles to your pan, tossing until all ingredients are combined 
and noodles are well coated.
Serve with Thai basil and a lime wedge.

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