I've rediscovered curry.
Somehow in the last couple of years, as eating out has become less of a regularity and Thai food more of a memory, I've lost touch with this Southeast Asian signature. During the months I spent hiking my way across Thailand with my Coleman knock-off backpack and baggy fisherman's pants, I shoveled more curry into my maw than most American's would in a life time.
I miss those days of rice and spice-filled adventure. So, I whipped up this red curry with mushrooms, carrots, greens, and salmon in an attempt to invite the flavors of Thailand back into my life.
I'd call it a success. With fabulous leftovers to boot.
Maybe when this week is over and I'm done with school for awhile (counting the seconds), I'll delve further into the tales of my travels in SE Asia. For now, I leave you with salmon and vegetables in red curry sauce...
Red Curry with Salmon & Rice Noodlesserves 4
oz. thin rice noodles, cooked according to package instructions
1 lb. wild salmon fillet
juice of 1/2 a lime
salt, to taste
cayenne or crushed red chili flakes
1 T. olive oil
1/2 medium onion, diced
1/2 lb. shitake mushrooms (or other mushrooms), sliced
2-3 large cloves garlic, minced
1 T. fresh ginger, peeled and minced or grated
1 15oz. can coconut milk
3 T. red curry paste
1 tsp. fish sauce
1 tsp. lime zest
1 large carrot, thinly sliced
1 small bunch chard, coarsely chopped (about 3 cups)
- Preheat the oven to 450 F. Place the salmon fillet skin side down in a small baking dish. Squeeze the lime juice over the fish and season with salt and about 1/2 tsp. red pepper. Bake the salmon for approximately 15 minutes, depending on thickness, and remove from the oven. It should be undercooked in the center.
- While the fish is in the oven, heat the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium. Add the onion and saute until beginning to turn translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Add the mushrooms and continue to saute until they release their juices and soften some, another 5-10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and ginger and cook for another couple of minutes.
- Add the coconut milk, curry paste, fish sauce, and lime zest and stir well to incorporate. Bring the sauce to a simmer for 5 minutes. Taste and season with salt and/or cayenne, then add the carrot and simmer for 5 minutes more.
- While the curry is simmering, use a fork to flake the salmon fillet into chunks, removing the skin. Add these chunks to the curry sauce and stir. Add 1/2 of the chard, stir and cook with the skillet covered until the greens begin to wilt. Add the rest of the chard and cook until all of the greens are wilted. Taste and season as necessary.
- Portion the noodles into four bowls and ladle the curry over the top. Serve it up with a smile.