I often create a dish from the love of certain foods or a memory. This dish is a case in point. Hubby loves broad beans, so much so he usually plants a patch in the green house each year. He’s also a fan of mild curries. When we lived in Mackay, north Queensland for a year, I bought a kaffir lime bush in the hope of using it to make curries for hubby. Alas, we left the area for Melbourne after a year, so I gave the bush to my mother who luckily lives in Queensland.
I usually make the curry paste for this dish a day earlier and let it sit in a glass jar in the refrigerator for a day so the flavours can mix. Yet, if you’re time pressed, a bought Massaman curry paste would certainly suffice. I originally made the dish to feature edamame, yet I’ve frequently substituted broad beans (without their skins). If you choose to use the frozen ones, add the beans last as they’re fragile and will mush if you stir too vigorously. I often sprinkle the broad beans on top after they’re blanched.
· Kaffir limes are highly respected in herbal medicine because of its high content of beneficial organic compounds that positively affects the body’s systems.
· Kaffir lime fruit and leaves promote oral health, detoxifies the blood, boosts skin health, improves digestion, lowers inflammation, aids the immune system, reduces stress and improves the health of the hair.
THAI MASSAMAN CURRY
V, GF, SF, DF
For the curry:
1 cup coconut cream
1 cup coconut milk
4 tablespoons curry paste, above recipe or bought
1 sweet potato, medium
1 cup edamame, or broad beans
1 red capsicum (bell pepper)
1 pack firm tofu
1 cinnamon stick, or ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 cardamom pods, or ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
2 tablespoons tamarind paste, to taste
1 tablespoon coconut sugar
¼ cup roasted peanuts
fresh coriander (cilantro)
For curry paste:
¼ cup rice malt syrup
¼ cup tamari
2 limes, juice and zest
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
3-4 kaffir lime leaves, sliced finely
1-4 dried chili (depending on taste)
1 teaspoon galangal, sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 stalk lemon grass, sliced finely
1 tsp. cumin seeds, roasted
1 tsp. coriander seeds, roasted
2 cloves, roasted
2 cardamoms pods, roasted
½ teaspoons black peppercorns, roasted
1 tsp. turmeric
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
To make the paste, dry roast the dry spices in a pan on medium heat until fragrant, about 2-4 minutes. Soak the chillies until soft, take out the seeds and chop finely. Grind the spices first with a pestle and mortar until powdered, and set aside. Grind the chillies until smashed, then add the spices and grind to mix. If using a blender, combine all the ingredients for paste, and blend on high speed until it turns into a smooth paste. It is best to let it sit in fridge for a couple of hours or overnight, just to let it set and the flavours integrate.
To make the curry, cube the sweet potato and tofu into 3 cm (1 inch) size chunks, slice the carrots and capsicum into 3 cm (1 inch) length pieces. Add oil to the fry pan on medium heat, fry paste for about 3-4 minutes until fragrant, stirring so it doesn’t burn. Add the coconut cream and milk, and simmer for about 2-3 minutes. Add the cinnamon and cardamom, and mix well. Add the sweet potatoes on medium heat for 10 minutes. Give it a stir to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom, add the carrots for another 5 minutes. Gently stir, and add the edamame for another 5 minutes. Stir and add the capsicum for about 3 minutes. Finally, add the tofu and peanuts, and turn off the heat. The residual heat will cook the tofu without making it too soft. Remove the cinnamon stick. Add the coconut sugar and tamarind paste, adjusting the flavour so it’s a balance of salty and sour. Serve over rice and with roti and garnish with freshly chopped coriander.