Every night before bed, Bear, our black cat, meows at our front door. He’ll do it for minutes on end. It’s his signal that he wants to go for his evening walk. So every night, usually as I brush my teeth or after I have put on my PJs, I say “Bear! You want to go outside?!” He knows immediately what I’m saying. He meows and runs straight for the front door.
Typically as soon as we get outside and I shut the door, I hear Max on the other side. So Max starts meowing, saying “hey guys, let me come too!” So I rush back to our front door and lo and behold, there’s Max on his hind two legs because he’s been trying to push on the door handle with his front paws.
We walk up and down the hallway together, Bear prancing at a steady pace and Max trailing slowly behind. As soon as I start to jog, so does Bear.
Once we make the hallway rounds, we begin walking back towards our door. Bear plops himself down on his side, eager for what’s next. I proceed to literally drag him under his forearms across the carpet. I guess it feels like a fur massage. I know Bear likes it because he’s purring so loudly I can hear it even when I stand up to catch my breath.
Once I stop dragging him, he just stays there on his side, eager for more draggings. Eventually we all head back inside and snuggle up in bed, because it’s been an eventful night and we’re all tired.
Anyways. Should I be talking about this Thai Coconut Curry Soup? OK. It’s really ridiculously delicious. Like, we’ve made it four times in the last month. Instead of telling you why, I’ll let the photos speak for themselves.
Tips for making this Thai coconut curry soup
The most important part of making this coconut curry soup is the time it spends simmering away on your stovetop. I recommend letting all the flavors simmer for at least two hours, which I know sounds like a long time. But I pinky promise I wouldn’t make you wait that long to eat this soup unless it really needed it!
Simmering the soup with the lid off makes it thicken up in the most delicious way possible and ensures that all the flavors mesh together perfectly. You don’t cook the rice noodles with the soup base though, as the noodles cook quickly and would turn to mush in the broth!
To serve this soup, I topped mine with sliced jalapeño, fresh basil, pomegranate seeds, and crispy tofu (which is super easy to make, even if you’ve never worked with tofu before). If you don’t want to fuss with lots of toppings, stick to the crispy tofu and a squeeze of lime juice.
If you’re packing this soup for lunch, I recommend storing the noodles and broth base separately. Also, you might want to eat this Thai coconut curry soup far away from your coworkers. I’m nervous they’ll try and steal it for themselves…
2 jalapeño peppers, diced (leave some out for garnish)
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon red curry paste
1 1/2 teaspoons turmeric
1/4 teaspoon salt
15oz light coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar (can sub white vinegar)
2 tablespoons peanut butter
15oz chickpeas, drained
8cups low sodium chicken stock
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped (leave some out for garnish)
1 bunch fresh basil, chopped (leave some out for garnish)
for the crispy tofu
40oz (2 packs) firm tofu, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil (can sub olive oil)
for the rest
4oz rice noodles, cooked al dente
few leaves fresh basil
few slices jalapeño
lime wedges (I quickly put mine on the grill)
Heat a large pot or dutch oven on the stove over medium heat with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Once it’s hot, sauté the onion and green peppers until translucent, about 4 minutes.
Add in the jalapeño, ginger, and garlic, cooking for an additional minute. Mix in red curry paste, turmeric, and salt.
Turn the heat to high and add in the coconut milk, fish sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, peanut butter, chicken stock, and chickpeas. Allow to come to a boil, then reduce mixture to a simmer. Cook over low heat for 2 hours, allowing the liquid to reduce by about half. This gives everything a really ridiculously good flavor, so make sure to cook it that long!
When you’re ready to serve the soup, chop the cilantro and basil and stir them into the soup. leaving a few leaves out to garnish on top later.
While the soup is cooking, make the crispy tofu. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with a silpat or parchment paper.
In a large bowl, mix together cornstarch, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Toss in tofu, coating completely in cornstarch mixture.
Spread the tofu onto prepared pan, then place in the oven and allow to cook for 40 minutes, flipping the tofu over halfway through cooking.
To plate your soup, place a healthy serving of rice noodles into a soup bowl. Top with soup, then arrange tofu, basil, cilantro, jalapeño, pomegranate seeds, and lime all around the edge of the bowl. Serve!