Monday, April 14, 2014

Guest Post: Thai Feast

Guest Post from the recently relocated Natalie (sometimes blogging at Lady Justice):

We made a thai feast for some friends tonight, and it turned out pretty well, so I thought I would share these recipes I found.  This was the first time I had really made thai food like this (I have made curry before, but not the whole shebang), so I didn't really know what I was doing, but following recipes (and then adding my own personal twist here and there) is pretty easy and fun!

1. Tofu Tom Yum Soup:

My variations: I used a lot more tofu than it called for.  In fact, I don't even know what the recipe means by "8 medium sized cubes of tofu" . . . only 8 pieces, really? I used a whole pound!  So I would recommend doubling the water/broth amount as well.  I also substituted fresh thai basil leaves for the kaffir lime leaves. And I omitted the chili peppers (because I don't eat them).

2. Yum Pak Grood:

Omitted the chiles, otherwise by the book.  Fiddlehead ferns!!

3. Tofu Massaman Curry:

This recipe has a gajillion ingredients, but the homemade curry flavor is worth it!

Because there just weren't enough ingredients already, I also added 3 carrots (thinly sliced in half lengthwise and then on the bias), which I put in with the potatoes.  I substituted 1 lb.  cubed tofu for the chicken in this recipe.  I also used actual minced shrimp instead of shrimp paste, and fresh lime juice instead of tamarind.  I also subbed veg. broth for chicken broth (of course), and I subbed black pepper for white pepper, and ground cumin for whole cumin.  And I omitted red pepper, but left in a little bit of cayenne pepper.  (I served chili sauce, fresh lime wedges, and fresh cilantro on the side of all items as desired.)  Everything else by the book (or web page as it were).

4. Cassava Cake:

A super easy and tasty dessert!  I added 1 tsp. vanilla extract and 3 tbsp. agave to this recipe (as recommended by others in the comments).  Also, I used about 2 1/2 c. cassava, fresh grated from the whole root vegetable.  I also sprinkled powered sugar on the top.  (This totally freaked my boyfriend out because we weren't following the recipes exactly.  It's like he doesn't know what's going to happen if we improvise.  What are you doing . . . will the powdered sugar change the taste of the whole cake?!  Lol.)

Warning: Make sure if you are using fresh cassava to cur all the skin off, cut it into chunks, cut out the woody fiber from the center of the vegetable, and rinse the chunks well before grating.  Cassava can make you sick if you don't pre-rinse it or if you undercook it.  But since this recipe cooks for at least an hour, it should be fine.

We also served the cake with green tea, coffee, and green tea cakes as another dessert alternative.  I found all of these interesting and exotic items at Uwajimaya, a fantastical and gigantic Asian Supermarket wonderland in downtown Seattle!

I wish I would have taken pictures because it was tasty and eye-catching too!  But by the time I get it all made I am too hungry to think about taking pictures!