A simple Korean curry for a cold night
I’m something of a curry nut, I guess. The mix of spices and flavors makes my taste buds dance like so many fat hippos in tutus in some ancient Disney movie. That is to say, the flavors of a curry hit hard, but they do it with grace. A few years ago I was a fat schlub watching the Food Network on Friday nights wanting to make exciting exotic foods like curries and noodle bowls and not bothering to look up a recipe on the internet and do it. At the time Asian foods in general seemed super fancy and stuff.
It wasn’t long after our arrival in Korea that we were introduced to Korean style curries. For the first year we ate lunches in the school cafeteria (before we became wiser and more health conscious) and curry day was always great, because
it wasn’t completely disgusting it was actually served hot and tasted like something you might actually want to eat. We started making curries at home the Korean way and it didn’t take long to learn how to make a good, Korean style curry that tastes just like the ones served at the cheap Korean food stalls.
The Primate’s Korean Curry
Buy this stuff:
- One Korean Curry Powder Packet (Ottogi brand is good for this, Golden, Bekse, or Vermont Curry varieties all work)
- One large potato (or two small ones) – cubed
- Two carrots – cubed
- One zucchini – cubed
- One package of tofu
- Two eggs
- Two tablespoons white flour
- Salt and pepper
- canola oil
- Coat the bottom of a large-ish pot with canola oil, heat to medium-high.
- Dump all those cubed veggies in. Stir occasionally. I like to get a sear on them. Salt and pepper lightly.
- Cover the veggies with water, bring to a boil. Cook until tender.
- When the vegetables are tender, stir in the curry powder and drop the heat to a simmer. It’ll thicken up pretty quickly after this step.
- Coat the bottom of a skillet or sautee pan with oil and bring to medium heat.
- Beat the eggs and flour together to form a batter,
- Slice the tofu into about 1 cm thick slices, dip in the batter, and fry until golden brown. Flip and fry until the other side is golden brown too.
Plate it up
A Korean clay bowl would be great for this, but anything will do. Slop the curry on top of your rice, then neatly arrange some of the fried tofu on top. Pow! You’ve got a dinner that will impress any date. Especially a vegetarian date. You certainly won’t miss the meat in this dish, because the flavor of the curry and the volume of the vegetables and rice will keep you plenty full, but if it is a date night dinner, have the toothbrushes and toothpaste ready before you put on the moves.