Kurma Curry

mortar and pestle:

Vrajaloka from Surfers Paradise writes: “Needing a Vegan Thai Curry and Tofu recipe. Thanks heaps.”

Kurma replies: “Here’s one from my latest book, in the style of a Massaman Curry.”


Green Curry of Vegetables & Fried Tofu

This is a delicious Thai-inspired curry with an easy homemade curry paste that can be whipped up in a few minutes in a blender. Although the curry paste is green, the curry itself will end up being more of a yellow colour from the turmeric. As with all curries, this one is perfect served with a big batch of steaming hot rice. Serves 6.

750g potatoes, peeled and cut into 2.5cm cubes

oil or ghee for deep-frying

2 tablespoons oil

green curry paste (recipe follows)

600ml coconut cream

3 tablespoons lime or lemon juice

375g fried bean curd (tofu)

500g Chinese cabbage, sliced and steamed or stir-fried until just tender

2 cups green peas (thawed frozen peas or cooked fresh peas)

2/3 – 1 cup rich vegetable stock, heated

¼ cup chopped fresh coriander leaves

Deep-fry the potatoes in the oil or ghee in a wok or deep frying pan until golden brown and tender. Drain and set aside, covered.

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a heavy saucepan over moderately high heat. Stir in a bit more than half of the curry paste (or more for a spicier curry) and fry it in the hot oil for 2 or 3 minutes, or until it starts to stick on the bottom.

Add the coconut cream and the lime or lemon juice, and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until the sauce is fairly reduced.

Stir in the fried bean curd, and mix well. Heat through for 5 minutes. Mix in the cabbage, cooked green peas, and the fried potatoes. Add enough vegetable stock to form rich gravy. Simmer for a further 5 minutes. The potatoes will soak up a fair amount of juice, so be prepared to add more stock. Fold in the fresh coriander. Serve hot with lots of hot rice.

Kurma’s Green Curry Paste

2 small fresh red chilis, sliced

1 teaspoon yellow asafetida powder

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

½ teaspoon black peppercorns, ground

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 tablespoon ground coriander

2 teaspoons chopped coriander root

2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves

2 teaspoons sweet paprika powder

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

2 tablespoons grated dark palm sugar

Process all the ingredients in a blender to form a smooth, green paste. If necessary add a few teaspoons water. You’ll need a bit more than half of this paste for the curry. Spoon the remaining curry paste into a clean, screw-top jar and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.


Some latest mail:

Hello Kurma,

I’m sure you must come across thousands of exotic vegetables worldwide, and
certainly witlof [Belgian endive] may not be considered “exotic”, but do you ever use it in
your recipes?

We love it slowly sauteed in butter and oil and a bit water until
tender but still crispy, and then put on a high flame with salt/black
pepper/yellow asafetida power until the moisture is gone and it gets a bit
golden brown. A deliciously simple side dish. It is also great raw in a
variety of fresh salads. Are you familiar with it? Greetings, Ria & Dick, Belgium.


Hello Ria and Dick,

I have used it a few times in salads to add bitterness, but not cooked with it. I will buy some and give your recipe a try. Thanks!! Yours in cooking, Kurma

A Day at Steve's

Yesterday I presided over a very pleasant cookery class/lunch down south of Perth in a new suburb called Wellard.

The crew, half of whom were already vegetarian, were just brimming with passion and enthusiasm for a day in the kitchen. It really makes a difference when everyone is just so focused and ‘into it’.

Steve invited a group of his closest friends.

This is Caireen, adding the finishing ingredient – mirth – to our Oven Roasted Cauliflower & Stir-fried Snow Peas with Cashews.

Caireen laughs it up:

British essayist Joseph Addison (1672-1719) said: “Mirth is like a flash of lightning, that breaks through a gloom of clouds, and glitters for a moment; cheerfulness keeps up a kind of daylight in the mind, and fills it with a steady and perpetual serenity.”

Martha roasts the asparagus for the BBQ Asparagus with Balsamic-scented Semi-dried Tomato & Macadamia Chutney, and Shaved Grana Padano.

Martha's asparagus:

Andy shows us the final product.

Yo Andy!:

Our youngest attendee, Jeremy aged one and a half, couldn’t wait for lunch to enjoy his asparagus.

Jeremy approves:

We also prepared Orange, Currant and Pecan-studded Canadian Wild Rice & Basmati Pilaf, Seared Chili Panir Steaks with Sweet Potato Mash & Rocket Salad,
Malaysian Vegetable-stuffed Flaky Curry Puffs, Succulent & Spicy Eggplant Pickles and a spectacular Warm Blueberry & Walnut-studded Semolina Halava Pudding with King Island Cream served with Hot Spiced Rooibos Tea (Masala Chai).

That’s our host, Steve, with the shaved head.

Mission accomplished at Steve's:

It was a very enjoyable day for all, and we injected a lot of love and laughter into the cooking – the vital ingredients.

Lunch at Steve's:

Coming to a kitchen near you SOON!

Think About it…

caitanya with deer in forest:


sarisrp khaga-maksikah

atmanah putravat pasyet

tair esam antaram kiyat

“One should treat animals such as deer, camels, asses, monkeys, mice, snakes, birds and flies exactly like one’s own son. How little difference there actually is between children and these innocent animals.”

-Srimad Bhagavatam, Canto 7, Chapter 14, Verse 9

Non-Dairy Sources of Calcium

vegan logo:

Radhanuga from Hillsborough, NC, USA asks:

“I’m having some problem finding a good non-dairy calcium source. My nails are
starting to look whitish and soft”.

My reply: There are lots of non-dairy sources of calcium…

Blackstrap molasses, Collard greens, Soy or ricemilk, Commercial soy yogurt, Turnip greens, Tofu, Tempeh, Kale, Okra, Bok choy, Mustard greens,
Tahini, Almonds, Almond butter, Soy milk, etc

Sesame is brimming with calcium. In the form of tahini it is great. Combined with chickpeas in hummous, or on toast with honey…mmm…!!!

Here’s LOTS of information about non-dairy calcium sources, go to:

Rumour Has it…

watering can:

Regular`readers of my blog and website know that I have published a lot of information on what I consider to be the dangers of microwave ovens. If you go the SEARCH box on top of the blog home page and key in ‘microwave’ you will find ample food for thought.

Paul Tomlinson from Kingston, Jamaica, West Indies wrote me yesterday:

“First let me say that I thoroughly enjoy reading your thoughts,
articles, reviews – in fact the whole web-site is exceptionally well done.
Good work.

However! Please read this “Urban-Legends” rebuttal to the claim that:

that has been boiled in a microwave oven (then cooled) is harmful to plants.”

So (Kurma speaking here) check it out for yourself. I must say that the so-called scientific rebuttal of claimed dangers of microwaved substances is, to my mind, not particularly scientific.

Notwithstanding the author’s more controlled watering experiment, the statement ‘water heated in a microwave oven is no different in ‘structure and energy’ than water heated with a gas flame, on an electric stove, or over a wood fire: it’s just water, plain and simple’ is begging for a rebuttal, in light of research to the contrary.

I’ll leave you with this:

In Comparative Study of Food Prepared Conventionally and in the Microwave Oven, published by Raum & Zelt in 1992, at 3(2): 43, it states:

“A basic hypothesis of natural medicine states that the introduction into the human body of molecules and energies, to which it is not accustomed, is much more likely to cause harm than good.

Microwaved food contains both molecules and energies not present in food cooked in the way humans have been cooking food since the discovery of fire. Microwave energy from the sun and other stars is direct current based.

Artificially produced microwaves, including those in ovens, are produced from alternating current and force a billion or more polarity reversals per second in every food molecule they hit.

Production of unnatural molecules is inevitable. Naturally occurring amino acids have been observed to undergo isomeric changes (changes in shape morphing) as well as transformation into toxic forms, under the impact of microwaves produced in ovens.

One short-term study found significant and disturbing changes in the blood of individuals consuming microwaved milk and vegetables. Eight volunteers ate various combinations of the same foods cooked different ways.

All foods that were processed through the microwave ovens caused changes in the blood of the volunteers. Hemoglobin levels decreased and over all white cell levels and cholesterol levels increased. Lymphocytes decreased.

Luminescent (light-emitting) bacteria were employed to detect energetic changes in the blood. Significant increases were found in the luminescence of these bacteria when exposed to blood serum obtained after the consumption of microwaved food.”