Hey friends! I’m still on vacation! Want to see what I’m up to? Follow along on Instagram! Heather and Cyrus from Arousing Appetites are taking over Rhubarbarians today. You are in for a real treat, some authentic Thai food! Get ready…… for Thai curry from scratch.
First up, let’s get to know Heather and Cyrus!
1. Tell us a little bit about you and your blog:
Arousing Appetites is a food blog on a quest to learn the recipes, cooking methods and ingredients from cuisines around the world. We’ll make adjustments for healthier and clean eating where we can, but we try to retain as much authenticity to the recipe and the hometown cuisine.
2. What is your favorite thing to eat?
Our favorite meals are typically very achievable at home and packed with flavor from easily source-able ingredients at your local grocery store. One of our absolute favorite things to make at home is a deep dish pizza in a cast iron pan. Two layers of cheese, two layers of sauce.
3. Coffee or tea?
4. What is your favorite restaurant?
Basically any restaurant that doesn’t have a menu in English (surprisingly a lot of them around DC!)
5. Alright, it’s Monday night. What are you making for dinner?
After a weekend full of eating, our Mondays are pretty low key. A good go-to for us is salmon en papillote and steamed broccoli to help us deflate
6. Do you have a job outside of blogging? If so, what do you do?
Indeed we do! Heather works in marketing and communications for a healthcare company, and Cyrus runs several businesses he either founded or co-founded.
8. Beer or wine? (or none!)?
More wine, although a nice cold one is pretty good from time to time.
9. Alright, what is your favorite recipe from your blog?
This is a tough one, but there’s a ceviche-style salad from Tahiti called Poisson Cru that we both really enjoy. And it’s so simple to make!
10. Where can we find you on Social media?
Here are the best places to find us:
Pinterest – http://pinterest.com/arouseappetites
Instagram – http://instagram.com/arousingappetites
Facebook – http://facebook.com/arouseappetites
Twitter – http://twitter.com/arouseappetites
And the blog! – http://arousingappetites.com
We’re so happy to be here – thank you Trish! – and to share with you what we think is a really awesome (and super authentic) way to make a good Thai curry. We both had the massive fortune of learning this recipe while trekking in the jungles of Chiang Mai (shout out to Bundito!), an experience we’re so incredibly grateful to have had.
As you’ll see in the recipe, the key to making a really amazing curry comes with the paste you make. The better the ingredients are mashed (if you use a mortar and pestle) or are blended together… the better your curry. For this recipe, we made an all-vegetarian version, although meat is more than welcome in a dish like this. In order to make the dish vegan-friendly, you’ll have to swap out the fish sauce for something like soy sauce. Removing a key Thai ingredient like fish sauce does make take away from the magic, but obviously it’s worth it if needed. One of the most beautiful ingredients of this recipe are the Thai eggplants, a form of eggplant that absorb flavors so well (and are far less high-maintenance!) than their other eggplant cousins. If you’re well-versed in the land of eggplant, you’ll notice that there’s no soaking or salting needed before cooking… just throw them right in! Otherwise, the dish is fairly simple and so worth making. Enjoy!
- For the red curry paste:
- 4 fresh red Thai chili peppers, minced (and deseeded if you prefer less heat)
- 3 fresh long red chili peppers, minced (and deseeded if you prefer less heat… we like it hotter)
- 1 large shallot, diced
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 2-inch stalk of lemongrass, hit with back of knife (to release aroma and flavor) then minced
- 1 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, minced
- 2 teaspoons dry shrimp
- 2 teaspoons fish sauce
- 1 Tablespoon turmeric powder
- 1 Tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 Tablespoon chili powder
- 1 Tablespoon whole coriander seeds (if not available, use ground coriander)
- 1 teaspoon dried lemon zest (optional, but highly recommended)
- Handful of fresh cilantro (recommended if available)
- Sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
- For the vegetable curry
- 4 Tablespoons of coconut oil (or any other oil)
- 2 shallots, diced finely
- 2 scallions/green onions, sliced thinly
- 4 Thai eggplants, cubed
- ½ cup fresh snap peas
- Red curry paste from above
- Up to 1 14 fl oz can of coconut milk (swap proportionally for water if you want a lower-fat option)
- Sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
- Create Your Curry Paste. In a mortar and pestle, combine your chili peppers, ginger, garlic, lemongrass and shallots and begin to pound. This will release the juices and be the base for your paste. (If using a blender, just combine all the ingredients at once and blend until a smooth texture).
- Next, add your dried shrimp, fish sauce, turmeric, cumin, chili powder, coriander seeds, cilantro, lemon zest and salt/pepper and mash all together. After several minutes of mashing, you should start to get a really robust and thicker paste-like consistency. It’ll smell great too
- Cook Your Thai Curry. Bring a large wok over medium-high heat and add your coconut oil. As the oil starts to heat, first add your Thai eggplant. Fry for 2-3 minutes (to pre-soften), then take out of the wok and set aside for a few minutes.
- Next, add your shallots and cook for 1-2 minutes. As your shallots start to sweat and grow translucent, add your curry paste. Mix thoroughly with the shallots. Add in the Thai eggplant and snap peas and mix together with the shallots and paste. Cook together for 3-4 minutes as both the eggplants and peas start to soften. As your vegetables start to soften, add your coconut milk and lower the wok’s heat to medium-low. Simmer together your curry for ~10 minutes, after which point you can take off the heat.
- Serve with a nice helping of rice (white or brown are both totally good), and Enjoy!
Thank you so very much Heather and Cyrus! I have ALWAYS wanted to make some homemade authentic Thai curry. I’ll be giving this a whirl for sure.
Check out Arousing Appetites for more exotic, healthy, easy recipes!