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Thai Red Curry with Shrimp and Tofu

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Serves 4

  • by Robert Danhi from Fine Cooking
    Issue 110

This light curry is exceptionally fragrant with lemongrass and wild lime leaves.

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  • 1 (13.5- to 14-oz.) can coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup red curry paste
  • 1 cup lower-salt chicken broth, or homemade chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 Tbs. light brown sugar or light brown palm sugar; more as needed
  • 1 tsp. fish sauce; more as needed
  • 3 stalks fresh lemongrass, trimmed, bruised, and cut into 3- to 4-inch pieces
  • 1 cup bite-size Japanese or Chinese eggplant pieces
  • 1/2 lb. large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 lb. extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 cup bamboo shoots, cut into bite-size strips
  • 1 cup chopped bok choy (2-inch pieces)
  • 1 Tbs. thinly sliced fresh or thawed frozen wild lime leaves
  • Whole fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

Shake the can of coconut milk or stir it well (this creates a consistent thickness, since the fat often solidifies at the top of the can).

In a 3- to 4-quart saucepan or wok over medium heat, simmer 1/2 cup of the coconut milk, stirring occasionally, until reduced by about half, 3 to 5 minutes. It will get very thick and shiny and may or may not separate; either is fine.

Add the curry paste, whisk well, and cook, continuing to whisk, for 1 minute. Whisk in the broth, sugar, fish sauce, and remaining coconut milk. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.

Add the eggplant and lemongrass and continue to simmer, adjusting the heat as necessary. After 2 minutes, add the shrimp and tofu and continue to simmer.
After another 2 minutes, add the bamboo shoots and bok choy and continue to simmer until everything is tender and cooked through, about 1 more minute.

Remove the curry from the heat. Season to taste with more sugar and fish sauce, and stir the slivered lime leaves. Transfer to a serving bowl (or serve right out of the pot). Remove the lemongrass or tell your guests to eat around it. Garnish with the cilantro leaves.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 370; Fat (g): 26; Fat Calories (kcal): 230; Saturated Fat (g): 19; Protein (g): 21; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 2; Carbohydrates (g): 19; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3; Sodium (mg): 700; Cholesterol (mg): 85; Fiber (g): 4;

Photo: Scott Phillips

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