“No time! No time! There’s never enough time!” I don’t enter into caffeine pill induced freak outs, but I do wish for more time when I look at the stacks of food magazines and books that clutter my floor. My list of things to make and bake grows longer by the day, and there’s never enough time to test and post. Someone find me a longer day, please.
Case in point, this showed up in the December 2010 issue of Bon Appetit, and I’ve been dying to make it ever since. A year and a half later, here she is – wow, look at that turn around time.
Indian is pretty much my favorite cuisine – I could eat it everyday and never get tired of it. This dish doesn’t just hit the Indian love, but also combines Thai and Mexican flavors. The recipe suggests setting aside a bit of the shrimp mix and using the next day in quesadillas. I didn’t, but I can tell you that the sauce yields way more than you’ll use, and I was hard pressed to think of something it wouldn’t be delicious on.
Typically, I’ll set dinnertime for around 6, nine times out of ten, actual eat time is closer to 8. This happens for two reasons – 1. I tend to take on giant projects and underestimate the time required, and 2. my cooking is usually accompanied by beer and dancing around the kitchen to Neil Diamond, or whatever Pandora graces me with.
I tell you this because I set out for my normal 6, and was finished waaay before hand. Read – this dinner is a snap to throw together, and if you prepared the salsa the day before, you’d be looking even better on time.
The spices, earthiness, and subtle creaminess from the coconut milk just work. I adapted the recipe slightly, adding mango to the salsa and lime and cilantro to the rice, and some other minor adjustments. Work with the fruits available to you.
My only disappointment with this recipe is that my photo in no way captures its awesomeness. Just when I think I’ve got this food photography thing down, my Leibovitz leaves me. Oh well, I know she’ll be back!
Another beautiful feature of this dish is that until the shrimp jumps in the pan, it’s vegetarian and vegan friendly. Yeah!
Try it, I promise you’ll dig it.
Shrimp and Coconut Curry with Green Beans
1 pound green beans, trimmed, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
3 lemongrass stalks
1 cup cilantro, chopped
2/3 cup shallots, chopped
1/2 medium jalapeño chile, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons Indian curry powder
1 tablespoon peeled fresh ginger, chopped
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped, plus sliced leaves for garnish
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 cups canned unsweetened coconut milk
2 1/2 pounds uncooked medium shrimp, peeled, deveined
Cook green beans in large pot of boiling salted water until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Drain.
Cut 2 inches from bottom of each lemongrass stalk; discard tops. Thinly slice bottom pieces; place in processor. Add next 5 ingredients, chopped basil, and 1/4 cup water. Blend until paste forms.
Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add curry paste; cook, stirring often, until dry, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in coconut milk; bring to simmer. Add shrimp; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until shrimp are just opaque in center, about 5 minutes. Add green beans; stir to heat through. Season curry with salt and pepper.
Transfer 2 cups curry to bowl; cover, chill, and reserve for quesadillas. Transfer remaining curry to serving bowl; garnish with basil. Serve with lime wedges.
Coconut Cilantro Lime Rice
2 cups jasmine rice
3 cups water
3 tablespoons canned unsweetened coconut milk
1 lime, juiced
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
Rinse and drain rice.
Combine rice, water, coconut milk and salt in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and let simmer until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed, 8 to 10 minutes.
Remove from heat. Let rice stand, covered, 5 to 10 minutes.
Add lime and cilantro to rice, stir well. Season with salt and serve.
Mango, Apple & Orange Chutney
1/2 mango, chopped
1 1/2 navel oranges
1 Golden Delicious apple, peeled, cored, cut into 1/3-inch cubes
1/2 red onion, coarsely chopped
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tablespoon seeded jalapeño chile, chopped
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon agave nectar or honey
1 teaspoon (generous) garam masala
1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
Cut all peel and white pith from oranges, following contour of fruit. Cut segments into 1/3-inch cubes; place in medium bowl. Add all remaining ingredients; toss to blend. Season to taste with salt. Can be made 8 hours ahead. Cover and chill.