So I’m over at my GF’s and she says she is going to cook a traditional Malaysian curry on account of her being from Cardiff, home of traditional Malaysian fayre. I think she might be pulling my leg as she’s actually Malaysian, not Cardiff and no one from Cardiff has seen a Malaysian anyway.
So how hard can a traditional Malaysian coconut curry be?
On returning from her ‘Serious Malaysian Cook’s Pantry’, I note she has assembled a genuinely terrifying list of ingredients:
1 tin chopped tomato
1 stalk lemon grass
1 tsp turmeric powder
5 mini new potatoes
3 small onions
1 cinamon stick
2 tsp chilli powder
1 tbsp corriander
1/2 an aubergine
1 tin coconut milk
1 kaffir lime leaf
1 inch cube ginger
And other stuff I’ve forgotten since taking the picture cos I’m proper confused like.
Anyway, here’s GF’s method:
Peel the potatoes and chop into bite-size pieces along with the cabbage and the aubergine; take one onion and mash or shred:
Next up, you want to bash the lemon grass with the back of a knife to release the oils:
Into a hot pan, transfer the mashed onion, the dried spices (turmeric, corriander, chilli powder), star anise, chopped ginger, cinnamon stick :
And fry for around 5 minutes to let the aromatics incorporate with the oil (I wasn’t sure about adding the dried spices here as I thought they might burn).
Now, add the vegetables and 1 pint water:
And this amazing mixture is going to simmer on a low heat for about an hour…
Which gives me enough time to construct a simple pickled vegetable salad of cucumber and carrot:
Pickling mixture is 1/2 glass water, 1/2 glass vinegar, 50g white sugar, which you are going to let infuse (right word?) with the vegetables for around an hour…
After which time lets check in with our curry!
You are hungry, just admit it.
GF’s final step is to add the tin of coconut milk and after simmering for a final ten minutes she serves over some coconut rice and some of the pickled veg:
Annnnnd how does it taste?
I like curries, see, and I think I make a pretty good one, but I’ve just had my ass handed to me on a plate (literally) by a small Malaysian. The curry is deep, aromatic, earthy and genuinely pretty epic. If I’m being really picky I would say it might taste like the dried spices burned a fraction and maybe it could have been reduced a bit more (my fault: I said add a bit more water towards the end). But overall, a really nice dish and one I will pretend not to be able to make so she can make it again!