Winter Squash Green Curry with mushrooms, eggplant, and tofu

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by: Single Chef






Seasonally speaking, winter squash and eggplant may not sound like a match. But the first winter squash comes into season while the eggplant is far from finished, so in fact they overlap quite nicely. Add tofu and dried shiitake mushrooms and you have a deep-flavored autumn stew that happens to be vegan. You can add the tofu uncooked to the sauce or brown it first in a nonstick skillet to give it a little more oomph. (You can also leave it out if you don’t like tofu.) I always like curries with rice—a delicate brown or white basmati or a floral jasmine rice. A passion fruit and pineapple fool would make a cool tropical dessert. And for wine, try a spicy dry Gewurztraminer from the Alsace such as Zind Humbrecht.




ingredients

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serves: 4

THE CURRY PASTE:

3-4 large garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon (heaping) peeled and coarsely chopped fresh ginger

3 stalks lemon grass (centers only, minced, or 2 tablespoons frozen lemon grass)

3-4 jalapeno chiles, to taste, seeded and chopped

2 shallots, chopped (about 1/3 cup, or 1/3 cup chopped scallion or onion)

1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro stems or leaves

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon ground cumin

2 teaspoons ground coriander

1 teaspoon salt

1 lime zest and juice

THE EGGPLANT, SQUASH, AND TOFU

2 small oblong eggplants (4-6 ounces each)

sea salt

8 dried shiitake mushrooms (covered with 1 1/2 cups boiling water)

3 tablespoons roasted peanut oil (or mixed roasted and light oil)

1 small butternut squash (about 1 1/4 pounds, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch chunks)

1 can unsweetened coconut milk

1 block firm tofu (packed in water, drained and cut into 1-inch cubes)

6 leaves Thai basil (plus sprigs for garnish, if available)

fresh lime juice to taste

Nutrition Facts
Winter Squash Green Curry with mushrooms, eggplant, and tofu

Servings Per Recipe: 4

Amount per Serving

Calories: 560

  • Total Fat: 40.6 g
  •     Saturated Fat: 23 g
  •     Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Sodium: 634 mg
  • Total Carbs: 42.1 g
  •     Dietary Fiber: 8.6 g
  •     Sugars: 5.3 g
  • Protein: 19.1 g
VIEW DETAILED NUTRITION

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preparation

1.  Put everything for the curry paste in the small work bowl of a food processor and work until pastelike and smooth. Add a little extra lime juice or water to loosen the mixture if necessary. Set aside.

2.  Quarter the eggplant lengthwise and cut into 3/4-inch wedges. Sprinkle with salt and set it aside while you prepare everything else. Just before you're ready to cook, remove the mushrooms from their soaking water, squeeze out (but save) their juices, and cut them into quarters or wide strips, discarding the tough stem. Reserve the liquid.

3.  Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a wide skillet. Rinse the eggplant, blot it dry, then add it to the pan and turn it quickly in the oil. Cook over medium-high heat just to brown the cut surfaces, 4 to 5 minutes.

4.  Heat the remaining oil in a wide Dutch oven. Add the squash and cook over medium-high heat, turning every so often, until caramelized in places after several minutes. Add the eggplant, reduce the heat to medium, then pour in the coconut milk, mushroom-soaking water, mushrooms, and two-thirds of the curry paste. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until the squash is tender, by which time the sauce will have lost its color.

5.  Add the tofu and basil leaves, then simmer until the tofu is heated through, about 5 minutes. Taste for salt, adding more if needed, along with the lime juice. Just before serving, stir in the rest of the curry paste and garnish with sprigs of basil.

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