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The mysteries of the (spice) universe

September 8th, 2007

So I always have loved Thai food.. One of my favorite places to go was in Cary, Thai Villa.. I used to
work close by, and would end up in there about once a week.. i normally got curry dishes, and once in a while would be experimental.. Sheila got this
amazing beef plate there.. It claims on the menu that the beef is “cooked to perfection”, and they are right.. It’s not like Applebees might claim “mouth
watering” or other such crap it was the real deal..

Well now that I have no job, and am just in school (learning awesome things about AC/DC I
never knew) I thought I would really try my hand at Thai cooking.. At least the Curries.. My friend Sara Ward and I were going to try and cook some Thai
goodness a few times when we both still lived in Raleigh, but alas we both moved away and it never happened..

If you like/love/desire/crave any of
the basic Thai curries you should keep reading.. They are easy as fuck to make.. I have been perfecting it over the course of a month or so now.. I was
going to try and make my own curry paste, but well that was WAY to damn much effort.. The key here isn’t to buy the Harris Teeter curry pastes.. Go to the
Asian market.. They have green, red, and panang curry pastes in little cans.. I found them here in Greensboro for 99 cents..

This is the kind I got.. There are no additives or preservatives either..

First I start making
some jasmine rice.. 1/2 cup of rice, 1 cup of water.. Thats usually enough for 2 peoples worth of rice.. It’ cooking rice.. I shouldn’t need to cover

So on to curry.. Take some amount of the curry paste, and mix it with 2 cans of coconut milk.. The harris teeter brand coconut milk is
fine, but you can get it anywhere you want.. It doesn’t seem to vary like the quality of the curry pastes.. Now as far as how much to use that is up to
you.. I followed the recipe on the can and used the whole thing to 2 cans of coconut milk and my mouth was ablaze in pain for 30 minutes afterwards.. 2
tablespoons is pretty wimpy.. I am thinking “2 pepper hot” would be about 1/2 a can.. That’s about where I like it.. You control the spice.. You control
the universe I mean hotness..

Now bring the coconut milk and curry paste to a boil stirring it around in the process.. Then all you have to do is
drop in the ingredients you want.. Let it simmer until the veggies/meats/whatever you added are cooked, and serve over rice..

The curry will serve
4 people, so I always like to have some leftovers for the next day, but just make up fresh rice.. You can half the recipe pretty easily..

combinations I have really enjoyed include:

  • Potatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Chicken
  • Basil (just put a ton in there it will
    reduce like Kale or Spinach)
  • Sugar Snap Peas
  • Snow Peas
  • Red/Green Fresh Peppers
  • Onion
  • Lemon grass

get the idea.. If you do put a meat in be sure that you time it so that it gets cooked just right.. Veggies don’t seem to mind some variation in cooking
time, but chicken in my experience goes from perfect to rubber pretty quickly..

Here is what I made for lunch in about 20 minutes..
Eggplant, Snow Peas, Red Pepper, and some Shallots..

Mmm.. Tasty curry and it was made from the stuff
laying around in the fridge..

So if you have ever wanted to try making Thai curries.. Well it’s easy as pie.. Enjoy..

Now I need to learn
how to make my own sweet and sour chicken.. There is no even remotely decent Chinese place in Greensboro..

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