- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil or peanut oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 medium onion, coarsely diced
- 1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely diced
- 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
- 1 potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1/2 red bell pepper, seeds and membranes removed, cut into 1/8-by-2-inch strips
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
- 1 14-ounce can coconut milk
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 2 tablespoons Tom Ka or Tom Yum paste, available at most Asian groceries (Don't sweat it if you can't track this down -- simply omit.)
- 2 cups lightly packed spinach leaves, stems removed before measuring
- 1 cup stemmed fresh shiitake mushrooms
- 3 green onions, finely sliced
- 1 cup lightly packed fresh mint or cilantro leaves (remove stems before measuring)
Plus, any one of the following:
- 1 pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
- 1 pound boneless chicken thighs or skinless single breast(s), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 pound monkfish or any other firm white fish, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 pound sea scallops
- 1 14-ounce package firm tofu, cut into 1/2-inch cubes and sautéed in 1 tablespoon vegetable oil plus 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil until brown on all sides
- Heat the sesame oil in a stockpot over medium heat and stir in the garlic, onion and ginger. Stir for 3 minutes.
- Add carrots, potato, bell pepper, coriander, cardamom and cayenne. Stir for 2 minutes.
- Add the broth or stock, coconut milk, lime juice and Tom Ka or Tom Yum paste. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes (adjust heat as required to simmer).
- Add the spinach, mushrooms, green onions and most of the mint or cilantro leaves. (Reserve some for garnish before adding to curry.) Simmer for 5 more minutes.
- Add the shrimp, chicken, fish, scallops or tofu and simmer for 5 more minutes, or until the food is cooked through.
- Serve in warmed bowls.