Sunday, November 16, 2008

thailicious in weirdland

Last week I had the pleasure of having two days off in a row, so I planned to make an excursion. Not a huge excursion really, but more of a "hey i should go to town and not waste gas driving home" type of excursion. Unfortunately, my plans to go to town did not stay hidden long, as I was soon harassed (well, maybe that's an exaggeration, I was asked nicely) if I could take Nomad to town. Now, Nomad is another dorm mate. And actually, until this week, he was my only other dorm mate. I've known his presence for some three years now, as he seems to flop around the park much as I do. However, as his name implies, he has been doing so for approximately the last 30 or 40 years. Pendragon, his last name, is only slowly revealing itself to me. I'm thinking it has something to do with PC gaming, as "that is really all I do" (direct quote).I have been told that if asked how he is doing, he will often respond with, "I am sorry, but I must ask you not to intrude on my personal life." I have tried a number of times to evoke this response, but have been ignored. I will persevere! 

Weirdness aside, we actually had quite a nice drive to town. We both grew up in big cities and have somewhat similar liberal ideals, so we could talk about something (though he grew up in the 1960's in Harlem). Though by the time I got to town, I realized how annoying it is to have someone else to attend to. I managed to drop him at the library for a while and go get some necessary items- and discovered a Thai grocery store!! In Columbia Falls! I was ecstatic. So was the shop owner, actually. Upon entering she shrilled a welcome greeting from the back of the store and didn't stop talking to me the entire time I was in there. I bought quite a few items, produce and spices, and even picked up some lunch from the little cafe she has going on there (delicious). 

The most immediate delicacy that I wanted to dive into was my Ma
saman Curry Paste. Though you CAN make Masaman curry completely from scratch, lets face it... it's easier when there is a pre-made paste. HOWEVER, you can make Masaman curry with any type of curry paste (red, green, specialty) it just depends what you add to it. Masaman curry is usually a sweeter curry, but I (of course) like to make it very spicy as well. Here is what I came up with: 

Veggie Masaman Curry with Fake Crab (because it's cheaper)

3 tbs curry paste (masaman if available)
3 tbs vegetable oil

7-10 oz fake crab (or real, if you like)
1 small head bok choi (leaves separated and cut down) 
1 medium head broccoli (chopped)
1 medium onion (chopped)
1-2 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped

1 can coconut milk
1 1/2 cups water
4 tbs fish sauce
3 tbs brown sugar
3 tbs garlic paste or other such garlic-y sauce/spice
red pepper flakes for spicyness

rice noodles

This is super easy: 
- Saute curry paste and oil about 1 1/2 minutes
-Add crab, saute about 3 minutes more
-Add all veggies, saute about 3 minutes more
-Add coconut milk, water, sugar, garlic
-Let simmer for at least 30 minutes, until sauce starts to thicken. If it gets too thick, add more water. Add chili flakes whenever you like to increase spiciness. The longer you let it simmer...the tastier it will be! 
-Pour curry over rice noodles! 

1 comment:

ChiKushy said...

i forgot his last name was Pendragon! what a fascinating person. with crazy eyes.

this looks de-lish. i will try it and get back to you. hurrah for your cooking blog!

stay warm out there!