Cook up Thai in your imagination and you will think of fragrant flavors and crunchy vegetables served in a rich coconut sauce. In most Thai dishes, you will taste the distinct flavors of ginger, garlic, lime, and coconut milk. And, unlike most Asian foods, most Thai-style dishes are cooked in a more soup-like sauce rather than a thick, Indian Masala curry sauce. If you are looking to cook up some veggies in a short amount of time, using Thai flavors is one of the best ways of rustling up a nutritious meal that packs a punch! All you need is a large hot wok, chopped vegetables, and aromatic Asian ingredients. When you are at the store, pick up some Thai basil, Kaffir lime leaves, lemon grass, ginger, garlic, lime, and water spinach. Fill your cupboards with these Thai goodies and you will be able to make a delicious dish in no time at all. Are you ready to cook veggies Thai style? Then, follow this guide!
1. Slice Up Your Vegetables
Use vegetables that you will commonly find in Thai dishes, like shallots, onions, broccoli, bamboo shoots, bell peppers, pok choi, eggplant, bean sprouts, carrot, cabbage, or kale. Slice them roughly and lay them to one side.
2. Go Crazy With Lemongrass
Thai food is incredibly aromatic, so funk up your veggies with a few stalks of lemongrass. Slice off the lower bulb and remove the tough outside leaves, chop the lemongrass in 1-2 inch sections. Adding lemongrass will add a zesty and lemon flavor and scent to your dish! Note: when purchasing lemongrass look for firm stalks!
3. Heat Oil in a Sizzling Hot Wok
Turn up the heat, add the oil of your choice (I use coconut oil), and heat until the oil sizzles in the wok. Next, throw in all of your chopped veggies and stir-fry your veggies for around 7-10 minutes! Cooking on a high heat for a short amount of time will ensure that your veggies stay al dente. Stir constantly to ensure that the veggies are cooked evenly and so that no burning occurs.
4. Add Warming Spices
Now add 1 chopped chilli, 2 chopped cloves of garlic and 1 finely diced knob of ginger. These warming spices will add a rich flavor that Thai food is renowned for.
5. Become Best Friends With Lime
You will find lime juice and Kaffir lime leaves in most (if not all) Thai dishes, so for two average servings of Thai style veggies, add the juice of 1/2 large limes and 2 kaffir lime leaves (not forgetting to remove the lime leaves before serving!)
6. Pour in Vegetable Stock
As we mentioned earlier, Thai is known for curries that have a soup-like consistency. So tip in a little vegetable stock so that it covers around a quarter of your vegetables. Adding vegetable stock will add more flavor and moisture to your dish.
7. Add in the Coconut Milk and Coriander
When eating Thai, you will want to taste the aromatic flavors followed by the richness of the coconut milk. After adding the 1 can of full fat coconut milk, cook for 20 minutes on a low to medium heat, in the last 2 minutes add a handful of chopped fresh coriander and simmer.
8. Garnish With Thai Basil
Unlike the basil we all know and love, Thai basil has more of a distinct spicy peppermint flavor. Fresh Thai basil will add to the aromatic flavors of lemon grass, garlic, ginger, chillies and lime in your dish (read more about the uses of Thai basil here). Finally, roughly chop thai basil and, garnish your Thai veggies. Enjoy!
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