thai yellow curry with seitan and potatoes
When I was in Sydney a couple of weeks ago I bought some handmade seitan from Suzy Spoon’s Vegetarian Butcher. You can also buy seitan or soy mock meats at a lot of Asian grocers – my favourite is Vincent’s Vegetarian. If you’ve never been to Vincent’s, and like mock meat, you really should go. It is astonishing and slightly scary what you can make with soy and wheat protein! If you are not a mock meat fan, then you could use chick peas, some fried tofu chunks or just other firm vegetables with the potatoes.
The potatoes I used in this dish are some beautiful Dutch Creams I grew this year that are almost ready to harvest. I dug a couple out from under the plants with my hands, leaving the plant intact. Dutch Creams are my favourite potato at the moment. They are good for using in just about anything – baking, boiling, roasting and salads. They look beautiful with their yellow flesh and they taste wonderful.
Anyway, enough of the potato adoration. I needed to use the seitan and I thought of this yellow curry that I’d made at a cooking school in Thailand about 12 years ago. Thai yellow curries are unusual because they use both curry paste and curry powder.
I dug out the notes from the school to a check up on the ingredients and headed off to Victoria Street in Richmond to stock up on some essentials that I didn’t have – like fresh lemongrass.
I don’t make curry pastes very often, but when I do I remember how fresh and vibrant they are compared to commercially made ones. This time I decided to go the home-made route, but really you can use a commercially made one and it will be great. I can’t be bothered making a curry paste about 99 times out of 100, I’m fundamentally a lazy cook. 🙂
Valcomm make a yellow curry paste that doesn’t have shrimp paste in it and it is easily available at supermarkets in Australia.
I felt like some greens with mine so, although it isn’t traditional, I threw a big handful of spinach leaves on top of the steamed rice in my bowl to wilt underneath the curry.
- For the curry paste
- 12 mild large dried red chillies seeds removed and soaked in water for at least 10 minutes then finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon ginger peeled and finely chopped
- 4 tablespoons chopped lemongrass (white parts only)
- 4 tablespoons crushed garlic
- 1 teaspoon vegan shrimp paste (you can buy this from the Cruelty Free Shop]
- For the curry
- 300 g seitan sliced into bite sized pieces
- 250ml coconut cream
- 250ml coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon mild curry powder
- 4 tablespoons yellow curry paste (either made as above or a ready made one)
- 2 medium potatoes peeled and cut into 2 cm cubes
- 2 tablespoons palm sugar (raw sugar, muscovado or panela are OK too and they are available in a supermarket)
- 3 tablespoons light soy sauce
- Put all of the paste ingredients into a mortar and pound until smooth, You could also do this in a blender adding a bit of water to help. Or use a ready made curry paste.
- Put the coconut cream into a large frying pan or wok and fry for several minutes stirring until the oil separates. This is really important, it contributes to the flavour of the curry.
- Add the curry paste and curry powder and fry for 1-2 minutes
- Add the seitan and potatoes fry for a couple of minutes
- Add the coconut milk and bring to the boil
- Add half of the palm sugar and half of the soy sauce
- Simmer until the potato is cooked adding some water if needed.
- Taste and add as much of the sugar and soy sauce as needed.
- If the curry has become too thick or the oil has separated, thin with some extra coconut milk to bring it back together.