I’m not sure what’s going on with me lately, but I’ve been craving Thai food. I just love the combination of spices, lime juice, and peanuts that are so prevalent in Thai cooking. After enjoying last week’s Thai Tofu Noodle Bowls, I found myself with a hankering for something with Thai curry paste. Red Curry Beans to the rescue!
Red Curry Green Beans are traditionally served as a side dish. I don’t often make main and side dishes for dinner – I usually make one big pile of something like a stir-fry or pasta dish. So for this recipe, I’ve added non-traditional tofu. I wanted to make the dish heartier than a side would be, and I also wanted to give it a little boost of protein.
This dish comes together super quickly, so it’s handy to have all of your ingredients prepped before you start cooking.
- First you blanch the green beans, which will cut down on their cooking time.
- You can start cooking the tofu while the water for the green beans is boiling to cut back on cooking time a little. Remove the tofu from the pan when it’s done, so you can use the same pan for the garlic and ginger.
- Once the green beans are ready, you cook the garlic and ginger along with the red curry paste or a few minutes.
- Next you add everything else to the pan, including the cooked tofu. Just cook for a few more minutes and dinner is ready!
Serve your green beans with cooked brown rice or rice noodles.
Kaffir lime leaves can be little difficult to find. I found them sliced and preserved in salt water in a jar in the Asian section of my local Whole Foods, right next to the curry paste. I’ve also found them dry in the spice section of Fairway Market. I’ve yet to find them fresh anywhere.
Red Curry Paste
Make sure you read the ingredients of your red curry paste to make sure it doesn’t contain fish. I recently made the mistake of buying a jar without checking the ingredients and didn’t realize until I started cooking with it than it wasn’t vegan. I like Thai Kitchen Red Curry Paste. (Be careful though, because their Roasted Red Chili Paste contains anchovies and shrimp!)
Thai-Style Red Curry Green Beans
- 1 pound green beans trimmed and chopped
- ½ block extra firm tofu cut into small, half-inch dice (7 ounces)
- 4 teaspoons peanut oil divided
- 4 teaspoons tamari divided
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1-inch piece fresh ginger minced
- 3 tablespoons red curry paste
- ¼ cup vegetable stock
- 1 teaspoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon kaffir lime leaves drained, or 4 leaves, sliced
- 1 teaspoon agave
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes or more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- Thai hot pepper thinly sliced
- 2 scallions sliced
- 2 tablespoons crushed peanuts
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and have a large bowl of ice water ready. Cook the green beans in the boiling water for 2 minutes. Remove them from pot with a slotted spoon and place them in the ice water to keep them from cooking. After a few minutes, remove them from the ice water and set aside.
- Heat 2 teaspoons of oil and 2 teaspoons of tamari in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the tofu to the oil and cook for about 2 or 3 minutes per side, until each side is lightly golden. Remove the tofu from heat and set aside.
- Lower the heat to medium. Add the rest of the oil to the pan along with the garlic and ginger and cook until translucent and fragrant, about two or three minutes.
- Add the red curry paste and mix with the ginger and garlic. Cook for about a minute.
- Add the rest of the tamari, lime juice, kaffir lime leaves, stock, agave, red pepper flakes, and salt to the pan. Stir and mix well.
- Increase the heat to medium-high again. Add the green beans and tofu to the pan and toss to coat. Cover and cook for about 5 minutes, or until the green beans are crisp-tender.
- Serve hot, topped with the scallions, crushed peanuts, and pepper slices. Serve with cooked brown rice.
- Thai-Style Cauliflower Steak
- Thai Noodle Salad
- Coconut Tempeh with Pineapple Salsa
- Tempeh Lettuce Wraps
- Sweet Potato Curry
- Coconut Curry Soup