Thai green lentil soup

Thai green lentil soup
Thai green lentil curry
Thai green lentil curry

What could be better than boiling hot soup on a boiling hot day? Well, I apologise, but my cupboards were bare and I couldn’t be bothered to get the bus to Waitrose. So, instead, I sat in the sun and drank wine for nine straight hours, listening to The Little Mermaid soundtrack and crying – I don’t feel very well today.

Anyway, next week I’m off on hollibobs, so alas, you won’t be receiving a recipe from me, but expect something deliciously Italian on my return. In the meantime, let’s head to Asia and enjoy this rather tasty Thai green soup.

Thai green lentil soup
Serves 4 / Hands on time 20 mins / Total time 45 mins /
V Vn Gf* Df  ❄🌶
1 tsp coconut oil
1 white onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
Knob of fresh ginger, grated
50g vegan/gluten free *Thai green curry paste, I use Blue Dragon
1 can coconut milk
150g sweet potato, peeled and cut into chunks
150g dried green lentils
1 litre vegetable stock*, I use 2 Knorr vegetable stock pots
Handful of fresh coriander, including the stalks
Stick of lemon grass, bashed


Method
1. In a large cooking pot with a lid, sweat the chopped onions in the oil, over a medium to low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally (add a dash of water if needed, to prevent burning).
2. Once soft, add the grated ginger, crushed garlic and the Thai green curry paste. Give it a good stir and cook for a couple of minutes. Add the sweet potato, coconut milk, stock, lentils and the bashed lemon grass and bring to the boil.
3. Turn down the heat and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cut the storks off the bunch of coriander and add them to the soup. Cook for 5 more minutes. Finally take off the heat, fish out the lemon grass and blend – either with a hand blender or a food processor. Serve topped with chopped coriander leaves.

Thai green lentil curry
Thai green lentil curry

If you’ve had a go at making any of my recipes, I’d love to hear from you. Follow me now @corrieheale and tag your recipe pictures using #corriesrabbitfood.


V– Vegetarian    Vn– Vegan    Df– Dairy free.   🌶– Spicy
Gf– I use Knorr vegetable stock pots because they are gluten free but other stock pots/cubes may not be. Always check the label. 

 Suitable for home freezing once cooled. Consume within 3 months.
* Some Thai green curry pastes contain crustaceans and fish.




Mushroom katsu curry

Mushroom Katsu Curry
Mushroom Katsu Curry

Katsu curry doesn’t have to be made with chicken you know, a chestnut mushroom rolled in breadcrumbs can do just as well… I think… Not that I’ve ever tried chicken. Well I did once, I ate a chicken burger from New York Chicken & Ribs in Letchworth Garden City when I was 15 but I was so drunk, I don’t remember what it tasted like. Probably pretty good considering anything fried and greasy tastes amazing when you’re inebriated.
Anyway, realising chicken katsu curry is in fact vegetarian, (minus the chicken on course) I decided to give it a go. It’s not that hard to make but it can be a bit of a faff, so I tend to make double the sauce and freeze the rest for later. This means that when I’m feeling lazy, (which is a lot) I can forget the breaded mushrooms altogether and simple pour the silky sauce over some roasted butternut squash, it’s divine and a little less fiddly. However, if you’ve never tried katsu curry, then I highly recommend you start with this mushroom version, it’s well worth getting your hands a bit messy for.
Unlike an Indian curry, Japanese curry is a bit sweeter, not as spicy but has just enough chilli to warm through you as you eat it. Perfect for people afraid of a bit of heat (like my mum). Enjoy, or as they say in Japan
楽しんで… (I think).


Mushroom katsu curry
Serves 2 / Hands on time 30 mins / Total time 1 hour 10 mins / V Df 
Sauce
1 tbs sunflower or vegetable oil
1 onion, peeled and chopped
5 garlic cloves, peeled
2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
2 tbs plain flour
1 tbs medium curry powder
600ml vegetable stock, I use Knorr
1 tbs reduced salt soy sauce
1 bay leaf
2 tsp honey
½ tsp garam masala
Mushrooms
Rapeseed spray oil (see tip below)
8 large chestnut mushrooms
2 handfuls 
Pako breadcrumbs
2 medium eggs, beaten
Salad dressing
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp soy sauce,
1 tsp rice vinegar
sprinkle of sesame seeds
To serve 
250g sushi rice and salad leaves


TIP: Buy an empty spray bottle and fill it with your favourite cooking oil – I use rapeseed oil. This distributes the oil evenly over food and is a great way of cutting calories when roasting or frying as you don’t need to use as much.


Method
1. Preheat oven to 200C°/180°C fan/400°F/gas mark 6. If making sushi rice do this first and follow the packet instructions. To make the sauce, fry the chopped onion and whole garlic cloves in the oil in a large saucepan, on a medium heat, for a couple of minutes. Add the chopped carrots, give it a stir and put the lid on. Continue to sweat for a further 10 minutes.
2. Add the plain flour and the curry powder and cook for a minute, stirring continually. Add the stock in a slow steady stream and continue to stir (this avoids any lumps). Add the bay leaf, soy sauce and honey and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, beat the eggs in a bowl with a fork and pour out a generous amount of pako breadcrumbs onto a large plate. Spray a large oven tray with oil and pull the storks out of the mushrooms. Take each mushroom and dip it in the beaten egg. Once covered, roll it in the pako breadcrumbs until well coated and place on the oiled baking tray. Repeat this process until all your mushrooms are covered. Spray with oil and put in the oven for 20 minutes, turning halfway through.
4. Add the garam masala to the sauce and season with salt and pepper. Give the curry a stir and take off the heat. Pass the curry through a sieve using a wooden spoon to help force it though. (If you prefer a chunkier sauce, don’t bother sieving it but remember to remove the bay leaf. Or if you like a smooth but thick sauce, sieve it but add the vegetables back in (minus the bay leaf) and blend with a hand blender). Pour into a new pan and heat on a low heat to keep the sauce warm until your mushrooms are ready.
5. If making a salad, mix the dressing ingredients together and dress 2 handfuls of mixed leaves in a bowl.
6. Remove the mushrooms carefully from the oven and serve on top of the curry sauce, accompanied with sushi rice and salad.
TIP: To make the sushi rice into domes, simply spoon sushi rice into a tea cup and mold to the cup by pushing down with a spoon. Turn out onto a plate.








If you’ve had a go at making any of my recipes, I’d love to hear from you. Follow me now @corrieheale and tag your recipe pictures using #corriesrabbitfood.


V– Vegetarian    Df– Dairy free
 The curry sauce is suitable for home freezing. Keep up to 3 months 


Yasai itame

Yasai Itame
Thai Green Curry Noodle Soup
Thai Green Curry Noodle Soup

“Aren’t you going to look at the menu?”
“No way, I know what I’m having, I always have the Yasai Ramen… I don’t like change” I say pushing the unopened menu away from me.
“But it wouldn’t kill you to try something new” said Jamie burying his face deeper into the Wagamama menu. “How about the Yasai Itame”
With a big sigh I reluctantly pick up my menu again and scan the noodle soup section. “Where’s that then?”
“It’s under ‘curry'”
“No thank you” I say and abruptly close my menu again and push it towards him. “You know I always order noodle soup so stop trying to make me try new things, I hate new things!”
“Yes but it IS a noodle soup, just a curry one”…
“Is it?” I say perplexed and reach for my menu for a third time. “It has to have tofu in it though, does it have tofu in it? I bet it doesn’t” I say shaking my head doubtfully as I squint to read the fuzzy tiny words. Why do I never wear my fucking glasses? I literally have the eyesight of a dead mole rat.
“Yes it does have tofu in it” Jamie smirks.
“Oh… But does it have those horrible fat noodles in it? You know, the ones that look and taste like actual worms.”
“Udon noodles?”
“Yes Udon noodles, disgusting, I hate those.”
“No it doesn’t have those in it.”
“Oh” I say again, realising I’m losing this battle so I might as well give in. So I order the Yasai Itame against my better judgement and start thinking of ways to guilt trip Jamie on the way home, after I inevitably hate it. But I don’t of course, it’s bloody marvellous, damn it!
“Oh do shut up” I say to Jamie through a mouthful of delicious noodles.
“I didn’t say anything!” He protests.
“You don’t have to, I can hear your smugness.”
“Would you have it again?” Jamie asked grinning.
“Yes… In fact, I’m only ever going to order this from now on.”
Jamie rolls his eyes.
… The problem is dear reader, I really REALLY liked this dish but obviously can’t afford to eat at Wagamama every night. So I had a go at making my own version, which to my surprise actually worked (for once). Not only is it quick, it’s cheap and buys you enough ingredients to make four portions. The recipe below serves two but I found I had enough ingredients left over to make it again, I only had to buy an extra can of coconut milk, everything else I had far too much of. For example, spring onions tend to come in bunches of 6, pak choy in packs of 2, chestnut mushrooms 12-13 per packet and so on and so fourth. So why not double up and have some scrumptious leftovers for lunch? Unless you can think of anything else you can make with left over beansprouts other than stir fry? Exactly.


Yasai itame
Serves 2 / Hands on time 30 mins / Total time 30 mins / V Vn Df 🌶
100g rice noodles
3 tbs Thai green curry paste*, I use Blue Dragon
2 tbs soy sauce
½ red onion sliced
3 spring onions, chopped
1 inch of bashed chopped lemon grass, finely chopped
Knob of ginger, finely grated
1 bulb pak choi, roughly chopped
½  red pepper, sliced
Handful sugar snap peas, chopped
Handful bean sprouts
6 chestnut mushrooms, sliced
1 can coconut milk
150g of firm tofu cut into cubes, I use Tofoo
1 lime, cut into wedges 
1 tsp sunflower oil
Fresh coriander leaves to garnish (optional) 


Method
1.Cook the rice noodles as per the packet instructions. Once cooked, immediately strain and rinse well with cold water to cool the noodles completely. Leave to drain.
2. Slice the red onion and roughly chop the spring onions. Put them in a heavy bottomed pan or wok with the oil. Cook on a medium heat until softened (around 10 minutes). Add a dash of water to the onions to help them steam. 
3. Add the Thai green curry paste and cook for a further minute before adding the finely grated ginger, lemongrass, coconut milk and soy sauce. Give it a good stir, add the tofu and bring to the boil.
4. Meanwhile start chopping your red pepper, sugar snap peas, pak choy and mushrooms (stalks removed).
5. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer and add the veg, a handful of beansprouts and stir carefully to avoid breaking up the tofu. Simmer for 5 minutes until the vegetables are nice and soft but still have a bit of crunch.
6. Evenly distribute the noddles into two deep bowls and spoon the curry over the top. Serve topped with fresh coriander leaves and limen wedges. 

Thai Green Curry Noodle Soup
Thai Green Curry Noodle Soup

If you’ve had a go at making any of my recipes, I’d love to hear from you. Follow me now @corrieheale and tag your recipe pictures using #corriesrabbitfood.


V– Vegetarian    Vn– Vegan    Df– Dairy free.   🌶– Spicy
* Some Thai green curry pastes contain crustaceans and fish. Always check the label.


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Thai Red Curry

Thai Red Tofu Curry
Thai Red Tofu Curry

I tried and rather spectacularly failed last week to make a Thai Green Curry.
“It’s not that bad darling” said Jamie wincing slightly as he took another bite. “It’s ruined!” I screeched as I dramatically flounced out the room to have a full blown Thai Green tantrum. I mean how difficult could it be? I didn’t even make the paste myself! What a load of old shiiiiiiit!!!… Once I’d calmed down I apologised to Jamie and sulkily ate my vile curry on the metaphorical naughty step. But how had I got it so wrong?
After careful dissection of my own recipe I identified three major errors. The first was using reduced fat coconut milk. The second was adding too much stock and the third and final big stonker of a mistake, was substituting rice wine vinegar for cider vinegar and using two tablespoons too many. Horrible.
So Thai green curry, you big fat idiot, I will not be defeated by you. I have revised my recipe and changed you into a Thai red curry and now you taste bangin’. Thank god because I’m not sure Jamie could cope with another one of my curry tantrums.

Thai Red Curry
Serves 4 / takes 45 mins /
V Vn mild/medium hot
1 tsp oil
1 small white onion, diced
1 inch of fresh ginger, grated
2 garlic cloves, crushed
400g butternut squash (I prefer to buy mine pre-chopped)
280g of firm tofu cubed or 4 Quorn fillets
1 stork of lemongrass, bashed
1 tsp brown sugar
1 can of coconut milk
3 Tbs Thai red curry paste
200ml vegetable stock
1 Tbs light soy sauce
2 handfuls of Kale
100g sugar snap peas, whole
1 bulb pak choy, roughly chopped
1 lime
Large handful of chopped coriander

FYI: Thai red curry paste contains chilli but if you like your curry extra hot, then I suggest you add a chilli or a tsp of chilli flakes.

Method:
1. Heat the oil in a large deep pot over a medium heat and sauté the onions, garlic and ginger for 5 minutes, stirring continually until soft. Add a tablespoon of water to prevent the mixture from sticking. Add 400g butternut squash and cook for a further few minutes. Add 3 Tbs of curry paste and cook for another couple of minutes.
4. Add the coconut milk, 200ml of veg stock, 1 Tbs of soy sauce, a tsp of brown sugar and the bashed lemon grass and bring to the boil. Add the tofu and simmer for 15 minutes with the lid a jar. Add the kale, sugar snap peas and pay choy and cook a further 5 minutes.
5. Remove from the heat. Roll the lime on a hard surface to loosen it and then cut it in half before  squeezing it over the curry and giving it a good stir.
6. Sprinkle with chopped coriander and serve with rice.

Thai Red Tofu Curry
Thai Red Tofu Curry

If you’ve had a go at making my curry or any of my other recipes I’d love to hear about it. @corrieheale corrie.heale@gmail.com

Aubergine & Spinach Curry

Aubergines & Spinach Curry

Ill again, ill again, jiggery jig. Really need to stop licking toilet door knobs. Anyway, the day before I got this stinking cold, I managed to make this rather delightful aubergine curry. This recipe is unusually mild for me but you have to be careful not to overpower the subtle flavour of the aubergine. It’s this mild and subtle flavour that makes it a particular hit with mums, mums don’t like hot curries you see, that’s just a fact. So, if you like your mum, then why not treat her to this curry or the Downton Abbey boxset? Both are exquisite gifts… It is Mothers Day next Sunday right?

Aubergine & Spinach Curry
Serves 4 / Takes 1 hour 40 minutes / Vegan
Ingredients:
4 aubergines
2 small onions
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp milk chilli powder
1 tsp turmeric
1 can chopped tomatoes
200g bag of spinach
Salt and pepper
1 tsp nut oil
Spray oil
Serve with brown rice (1/3 of a cup per person) with a dollop of low fat greek yogurt (optional) and a sprinkle of fresh coriander

Method:
1. Spray a deep roasting try with oil, stab the aubergines a few times with a fork and then spray them with oil. Pop them in an oven whole at 220C (200C fan) for around 50 minutes turning half way through cooking.

2. If serving with rice pour a 1/3 of a mug of rice per person into a pan and fill with double the amount of cold water. Season with salt, cover and bring to the boil. Once boiling, bring it down to a simmer and, cover again for around 15 minutes or until the water has absorbed. Take off the heat, cover and leave to one side. The rice will be cooked by the time you finish your curry.

3. While your aubergines and rice are cooking, pop your chopped onions in a heavy bottomed pan with a teaspoon of oil. Cook on a medium heat for a couple of minutes and then add all spices. If the mix is getting too hot add a couple of tablespoons of water to help steam the onions and cook until soft. Cover with a lid and leave to one side off the heat.

4. Once the aubergines are soft take them out the oven. Carefully remove an aubergine and put it on a chopping board. Cut off the stalk and then cut in half lengthways. Using a fork pin one half down and scrap the flesh out with a spoon. Pop the flesh in a big bowl, roughly mash with your fork and sprinkle with salt. Repeat until you have scraped out all four aubergines.

5. Pop your onion mix back on a medium heat with a tablespoon of water and warm through. Add the aubergine flesh and give it a good stir. Add the can of chopped tomatoes and bring to the boil. Once boiling reduce the heat and start adding the spinach a couple of handfuls at a time. Let it wilt down and incorporate into the curry before adding a couple more, stirring all the time. After the spinach has been added reduced the heat and cook for a further 20-30 minutes, stirring frequently.

6. Serve our curry with the rice you cooked earlier, a couple of tablespoons of yogurt and a sprinkle of fresh coriander. Tasty!

Aubergines & Spinach Curry
Aubergines & Spinach Curry

If you’ve had a go at making my curry or any of my other recipes I’d love to hear about it @corrieheale corrie.heale@gmail.com

Butternut & coconut curry

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When I went to Thailand a couple of years ago, I became a bit scared of coconuts. The locals told me that the most common death on the Island, was ‘death by fallen coconut’. I remember thinking, I can’t allow a coconut to be the thing that kills me, how embarrassing. So I spent the rest of the month constantly looking up and walking into trees/beach huts/local children etc. Managed not to die in the end though so thumbs up!
Anyway, I’m a little reluctant to call this a ‘Thai’ curry, as I’m not really sure what constitutes a ‘Thai’ curry.  Hmm… Anyway, I like to freeze half of mine so there’s plenty for me to defrost and eat when I roll in drunk after a night out. Standard.


Butternut & coconut curry
Serves 4 / Hands on time 15 mins / Total time 1 hour 15 mins / V Vn Df 🌶
1 can chopped tomatoes
1 can full-fat coconut milk
1 can chick peas, drained and rinsed
Knob of fresh ginger, grated
2 tsp red miso paste
1 tbs light soy sauce
Pinch of chilli flakes
1 lemongrass stork, bashed
300g butternut squash, peeled and chopped into chunks  (I like to buy mine pre-chopped and peeled)
1 aubergine, chopped into chunks
Handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
Brown basmati rice to serve


Method
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C /180°C fan/400F/gas mark 6. Put the chopped tomatoes, coconut milk, miso paste, soy sauce, grated ginger, chilli flakes and bashed lemon grass into a large pot and bring to the boil. Meanwhile, wash and drain your chickpeas and put to one side.
2. Once bubbling, add the chopped butternut squash and the aubergine before putting the lid on a-jar and cook in the oven for 30 minutes.
3. Carefully remove from the oven, add the chickpeas, replace the lid a-jar and cook for a further 30 minutes.
4. Once cooked, remove from the oven and leave to rest for 5 minutes. Meanwhile chop the coriander. Carefully fish out the lemon grass stork, stir in the coriander and serve with brown basmati rice.

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If you’ve had a go at making my curry or any of my other recipes I’d love to hear about it. @corrieheale corrie.heale@gmail.com


V– Vegetarian    Vn– Vegan   Df– Dairy free    🌶– Spicy
 Suitable for home freezing once cooled. Store in an airtight container and consume within 3 months