People seen to fall into one of two camps when it comes to cilantro. They either think it tastes lemony and they love it or they think it tastes like soap and they hate it. Then there's me. Am I the only person in the world who thinks cilantro tastes like soap, but loves it anyway? Probably. It does tend to overwhelm other flavors for me, though, so I usually save it for dishes that have a lot of other strong flavors to balance it out, like curry.
I loved the Mussaman curry paste I made from Real Vegetarian Thai and I still had a little bit of basil and lemongrass left in my freezer. I looked up the green curry paste in the same cookbook and found that the author adds just a bit of cilantro to her recipe for the color. Since I love cilantro and I was wanting to use basil too, I added lots of both. Then, instead of using level spoons of spices, I used heaping ones to flavor the extra herbs. Also, on my last post, Brii commented that she had bought a kaffir lime tree so that she could have the leaves whenever she wanted. So, I asked for and got three dwarf citrus trees for Christmas, including a kaffir lime.
The first dish I made with this was baked rice with seitan, which I'll post tomorrow. Susan of FatFree Vegan Kitchen made the same green curry paste recently too, and so far she has blogged about two recipes, including these Green Curry Tofu Cakes, which look amazing. Also, I'll probably make a green version of my favorite Thai curry at least once.
|My citrus trees|
|Wildflowers (that I planted) growing in the front yard|
|Wildflowers along the driveway|
Green Curry Paste
6 fresh serrano peppers, stemmed and cut into chunks
1/2 cup cilantro leaves (stems okay)
1/2 cup basil leaves
1/4 cup shallots, chopped
3 stalks prepared lemongrass
12 or more cloves garlic, chopped
1 heaping tablespoon minced ginger or galangal
1 teaspoon slivered kaffir lime leaves or lime zest
1 heaping teaspoon salt
1 heaping tablespoon whole coriander seeds
1 heaping teaspoon whole cumin seeds
7 black peppercorns
Put the first 9 ingredients, peppers through salt, in the food processor and process. Let the machine run while you prepare the spices, stopping to scrape down the sides of the processor bowl once or twice.
Toast the coriander seeds in a dry skillet until lightly browned and fragrant, about 5 minutes, and set aside. Toast the cumin seeds in the same skillet until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Grind the coriander seeds, cumin seeds and peppercorns in a spice grinder. Add to the food processor and process until the curry paste is smooth.
Makes about 1-1/2 cups.