I had some green and yellow beans in the garden, a piece of organic tofu in the fridge, and some leftover green curry paste in the freezer. When I make green curry I usually have too much for one meal so I freeze the rest (it freezes really well). My paste is really simple, some fresh ginger (peeled) some shallot (also peeled), fresh coriander (with stalks), green chilli (not too much for me, maybe one or two), and fresh lemon grass (one stick). If you have kaffir lime leaves or rind, the are good too, apparently, but I didn't have any. You should use a mortar and pestle, but I just added a little salt and blended everything in the food mixer.
For the curry
1 tbsp of green curry paste
(see recipe above)
2 tbsp oil
Green and yellow beans
Tofu, cut in big pieces
1 can coconut cream
Fresh Vietnamese mint
accompany with a blend of long and wild rice.
Sizzle the curry paste with the oil, add the beans and tofu, and then the coconut cream. Fill up the empty can of coconut cream with water and add (this way you can rinse and save all the coconut cream that get stuck to the can). Add salt only if you need it (my paste was salty already). Cook for 20 minutes, then add the Vietnamese mint (but also fresh coriander or Thai basil, if you have them) and the chilli, if you wish. Serve with steamed rice.
And now a few words about the the setting:
I love setting the table for different occasions, so why not? My style? It changes with the occasion and food, but generally I like the 'minimalist' look, and since what I like is to source my food from the garden or from the wild, I wanted to source my mise en place in the same way too.
I have a corner in my garden that looks quite tropical, with a few banana plants.
I went out with my machete: dadadadaaammm!! Those of you who have meet me are probably giggling by now, I am not exactly a bush woman!
The leaves needs to be washed well, like you would do with china, and dried with a tea-towel.
For a romantic dinner share a leaf between two.
Food can be served directly on the leaf (use as a plate) so I put the rice on the leaf but left the curry (it has a liquid sauce) in a bowl. Then you can pour the curry over the rice (use a nice ethnic wooden spoon) and eat with... fingers?? I never managed to, so spoon and fork worked well for us.
Photos and Recipes by Alessandra Zecchini ©