We had an oldie but goodie for tea this evening. Thai green curry. I used a mix of carrots, a red and green pepper, Savoy cabbage, tomatoes and an onion. The protein part was paneer, and we had it with brown basmati. I tried costing it, but it came out to 98p, and that was assuming value rice. So I have come up with this frugalised version, to fit our budget here. It should be just as yummy, the taste all comes from the paste and coconut.
2 heaped tsps green Thai curry paste, Asda £1.68, 220g, 8p
A stock cube, Asda 40p/12, 3p
Tin coconut milk, Asda, 95p
An onion, 5p
200g frozen pepper, Asda £1/500g, 40p
200g carrots, Asda £1.18/2kg, 12p
Half tin tomatoes, value, 31p, 15p
200g shredded white cabbage. Asda, 50p, 10p
1 tbsp lime or lemon juice, Asda, lemon, KTC 250ml 39p, 2p
200g potatoes at 60p/kg, 12p
Tin value kidney beans, 23p
200g rice, value 49p/kg, 10p
Total of £2.35 4 portions, 59p each
Prepare the vegetables how you like them (peeled or unpeeled), and sauté in a little oil until almost cooked. Leave the cabbage on one side for now.
Meanwhile, into a bowl, put the curry paste, coconut milk, tomatoes and stock cube and whisk together.
When the vegetables are ready, add the coconut/paste mix, and the cabbage. Simmer gently for a few minutes until everything is done. Add the lemon juice.
Serve with the rice.
The original recipe adds a tbsp fish sauce (nam pla), but DP can’t stand fish, so I don’t have any. If you have some, and like it, add it at the end, with the juice.
If you have any coconut milk powder left from making the mango and chickpea curry, that works just fine, it’s what I used, as I have loads of it.
You can use all kinds of different things for the protein element. As I said at the top, all the flavour comes from the coconut and the paste, so you can flex everything else. The paste is just a small part of the cost of this dish, so you can be generous with that if you like more of it. The paste also comes in a red version, which is the same price, and I have also seen a yellow version around. I have no idea what the difference in flavour is!
You can replace the kidney beans with 200g or so of any protein – prawns, chicken, pork, anything you like. You could use a tin, or dried of course, of any of the pulses, so green, brown or white chickpeas, green or brown lentils, soya beans, split peas etc. If you don’t mind the lentils disappearing into the mix, you could use red lentils. We had a pack of paneer, cut into cubes, fried until crispy in the wok and popped on top at the last minute so it stayed crispy.
You can flex the vegetables to whatever you have, it won’t make much difference to the flavour. So you could use Savoy cabbage, mushrooms, sweetcorn, celery, frozen mixed veg, whatever you want to.
This doesn’t take very long to make at all, and tastes delicious. A real classic, usually made with chicken of course.