Last night I didn’t have a plan for dinner. I did, however, have a drawer full of veggies in the fridge that needed to be consumed. Veggies paired with a hankering for something spicy pointed to curry. In another post I shared Chicken Udon Red Curry. Last night I went for a healthy Vegetarian Vermicelli Red Curry. Both are Thai curry recipes. Indian curry is equally good, yet vastly different.
I didn’t have any meat or tofu thawed so my plan was to make it hearty with lots of zucchini, eggplant, and tomatoes. Unfortunately, where I am a veggie-lover, my husband is a meat-lover. We compromised and he handled thawing out some ground beef for his bowl while I got to chopping. The ingredient list is sort of long, but it’s quite flexible. I always recommend just using what you have. The must-haves in this recipe are: onion, garlic, lime, fresh ginger, fish sauce, thai curry paste, and coconut milk. Everything else can be swapped for something else or left out. Even the vegetable broth can be replaced with water. You’d just need to adjust your salt (maybe add more fish sauce). Prep takes about 10 minutes, and once you get cooking it takes about 20 minutes start to finish.
Vegetarian (or not) Vermicelli Red Curry
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 white onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, grated
1-2 inches fresh ginger, grated
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced*
1 red chili pepper, seeded and minced*
1 small or 1/2 large zucchini, cubed into 1/2 in pieces
1 small Japanese eggplant, cubed into 1/2 pieces
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
2 Tbsp red curry paste
1 15oz can light coconut milk
1 15oz can low sodium vegetable broth
1-2 Tbsp fish sauce – please don’t skip this ingredient!
1 lime, zested and juiced
4 oz vermicelli noodles (these soak up a lot of liquid!)
20 sprigs of cilantro
Beef, chicken, tofu, shrimp – pick your poison*
*optional for extra heat
In a large pot or dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add sliced onions and let sweat for about 5-8 minutes until they start to become translucent and tender. Add fresh garlic, ginger, minced peppers*, and let them cook down with onions for another 2-3 minutes. Add tomatoes, zucchini, and eggplant and cook until tender. Add the curry paste directly to softened vegetables and toss to coat. Then pour in the vegetable broth, coconut milk, fish sauce, lime zest, half of the lime juice, and the rice noodles. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Let simmer 3-5 minutes to until flavors have combined. Add remaining lime juice to finish, and serve with freshly chopped cilantro. (If you’re adding meat, season with salt and pepper, and cook in separate skillet over med-high heat to the appropriate cooking temp for your meat of choice.) Then scoop portion in bottom of your serving bowl followed by a ladle of noodle/soup.
Vermicelli is tricky with chopsticks! Hope you enjoy!!