Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thai Meets Indian

Several weeks ago, I received a bundle of books to review from the Book Publishing Company in Summertown, Tennessee (an awesome publisher of vegan and vegetarian cookbooks). One of those books was Buddha's Table: Thai Feasting Vegetarian Style by Chat Mingkwan.

Chat's book features all sorts of classic Thai dishes sans the meat or fish sauce. Some are things I've never heard of like Pandan Sweet Jelly or Galangal Coconut Soup. Others are more common in Americanized Thai cuisine, like stir-fries, hot 'n' sour lemongrass soup, cucumber salad, and lots of curries.

The first recipe I chose to try was the Yellow Curry, a coconut curry influenced by traditional Indian fare:

Though you can't really tell from this picture, the curry contains soft white potatoes, kobocha squash, red bell pepper, coconut milk, and cubes of frozen (and then thawed) tofu. The recipe didn't actually call for tofu, but I need my protein ... and tofu is delicious in a curry. It did call for taro, but I couldn't find any at my neighborhood Asian market.

Also, the dish called for both coconut milk and coconut cream. However, the only thing resembling coconut cream I could find was Cream of Coconut ... and seeing as how that contains a ton of sugar, I knew that wasn't right. So I subbed the rest of my MimicCreme (a delicious vegan alternative to heavy cream) instead. The result was delicious, and the non-coconut flavored heavy cream didn't take away from the rich flavor of the coconut milk.

Expect more tasty dishes from Buddha's Table in the very near future! Some of the recipes call for really strange, new (at least to me) ingredients like lily buds and lotus seeds, and I'm anxious to seek those things out at Asian markets around town.

18 comments:

Dani said...

That looks great. Yeah I've never seen coconut cream before either, but the kind you found would actually work perfect for what I need, trying to create a coconut cake recipe...

Dani

jessy said...

the buddha's table sounds awesome - veggie thai eats without the icky fish sauce. hooooooray!

yay for your substitutions really adding to the dish - it sounds awesome! tofu would have been my choice for a curry, too - and anything with coconut and kobocha squash is a winner in my book. mmmmmm!

Crystal said...

Yummy! I just LOVE potatoes in curry- They just soak up the spices perfectly.. and have been my favorite addition to curries lately! I really love coconut curries the most!

VeggieGirl said...

LOOOVE Thai and Indian cuisine - great fusion.

T said...

Yum! Looks just like the yellow curry I used to get from my favorite Thai restaurant... oh how I miss it!

The Voracious Vegan said...

I need you to come over here and make this for me tonight! Dinner will be delicious. Seriously, that is one delicious bowl of food and it sounds amazing. Lucky you for getting so many fun new cookbooks to try.

eaternotarunner said...

That looks delicious!

The Ordinary Vegetarian said...

I was so excited when I saw the title of your post. Thai and Indian are my all time faves! I've only had yellow curries a few times from Thai restaurants, I should try making my own too. Yum!

Sheridanna said...

Yum! That looks delicious! And, hey, I get to see you tonight! I am thankful for Bianca!

Justin Fox Burks said...

One day we will look around and ask: Where's Bianca? She moved to The Farm they will tell us.

Kiersten said...

Sounds delicious! I love adding winter squash to curry, it's perfect. I look forward to seeing what else you make from the book!

nora said...

wow, i don't think i've ever had lotus, or taro root! that looks delicious. anything indian-inspired is A OK with me :)

Devan Geselle. N said...

Thai food, and Indian food.. both my favorites!

Cyn said...

Oh man, that looks super delicious! I think you can make coconut cream by buying full fat coconut milk, not shaking it, and scraping the more solid part off the top of the can.

JohnP said...

I've looked at this book several times and somehow never managed to buy it - so I am watching with great interest!

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Mmm, I love curry!

Nachos said...

I LOVE THAT BOOK!! The Pad Prik King is one of my favourite things in there, give it a go! :D

I'm going to have a go at the Tom Kha tonight, will let you know how it turns out if you like.

P.s. The Vietnamese book written by the same author is also pretty good :)

Nachos said...

Hi Bianca,

The Tom Kha soup was good but far too salty for me (I ended up adding another litre of water and 2 more kaffir lime leaves to cope with it!). Next time I'd probably omit a TBSP of soy sauce and the powdered stock, they're unnecessary.

Last night we made the Pad See Ew which was INCREDIBLE! I highly recommend that recipe :D

We're having a go at the Pad Thai tonight.