I’ve mentioned before that I’m really on a cooking kick lately. I’m growing to love having a Sprouts market about 3 blocks away, especially since I’ve recently discovered they sell spices by the ounce there. I’ve been Pinteresting ways to store spices today, and it looks like Chris and I will be making a special visit to the Container Store after church tomorrow to pick up some little stackable tins.
I’ve really expanded our cooking resources in the last few months because of all this new cooking. Among other things that haven’t often appeared on our shelves are red peppers, apple cider vinegar, lentils, canned crushed tomato (yes, us! Consuming a form of tomato!), dried beans, and most recently today, a whole slew of Thai related ingredients: coconut milk, curry paste, and lemongrass. These were for tonight’s specialty, Thai Coconut Curry Soup. The recipe I used can be found here, but I did adapt it a bit for what I had on hand.
My new favorite Hipstamatic pak, Foodie, was my weapon of choice for tonight’s documentation of dinner.
1. Ingredients: chicken broth, curry paste, lemongrass, lime juice/zest
2. Cilantro! Best stuff on earth. I’ll put it in/on anything.
3. Ingredients: Bean sprouts, ginger, cilantro root
4. Chris and Ryan, chillin’ like the villains they are, while the current episode of Big Bang Theory plays in the background.
5. Halfway through.
6. I’m a clean as I cook kind of girl, and after I’d started washing some of our cooking prep tools I was struck with how much yellow we have in our kitchen. My mother-in-law once asked me what ‘color’ my kitchen was, and I thought I’d navigated more toward greens over the years, but as it turns out yellow is actually far in the lead. I love it when things are monochromatic.
9. More soup!
My thoughts on this recipe:
1. Super yummy. I love the gingery, coconuty taste of Thai soup, and I’m so happy I can successfully make it on my own. I am ridiculously picky about soups. I LOVE soup when I get it right; I’ll literally eat soup for days when I find the right one. If it’s just a little too bland or off, though, it’s completely ruined for me. In the past, this has been my pumpkin soup and carrot/ginger soup, which Chris ate up enthusiastically while I popped a can of Campbell’s Vegetable Beef in the microwave to satisfy my soup craving. This soup is definitely on par with the restaurant taste of most Thai soups.
2. I would not use that many rice noodles again. The recipe calls for an entire box, which I was skeptical about because there were a lot of noodles, but after double checking I figured the volume of noodles would dwindle as it separated in the broth. It did, but the noodles seemed to soak up a ton of the broth which was disappointing; I really like brothy soup, and it turned out almost all noodles by the end. I would probably only use a quarter of a box for next time.
3. For the lemongrass, I had to do a little research to figure out what parts to use and what to throw away. The recipe called for puncturing the stems to release the flavor and tossing them in the soup for cooking, and removing when it was done. From what I read on one site, the lemongrass is mostly edible, so I chopped some very fine pieces of the lower halves of the stems to keep in the soup; the top parts were cut and thrown in whole for flavor only.
4. I had no idea you could buy frozen ginger. I just used some fresh ginger we had on hand.
5. I didn’t have fish sauce, and I didn’t really want to buy something new just for one recipe, so I substituted with oyster sauce that I always have on hand for when I make heavenly beef and broccoli. I don’t think it changed much.
6. While I usually LOVE green onions, I found them overwhelming as a garnish for this soup. I didn’t realize how much the flavor was being affected until I got a spoonful sans green onion, and the gingery coconuty taste was in full force. Yum.
All three of us really liked the soup overall, so it seems to be a winner. Next up on my list of Pinterested recipes: Vegan chili.