This is a vegan curry with an indonesian curry base and Chinese main ingredients. It’s the easiest one for me to make in China using locally-sourced nutrient-dense ingredients.
If you have rice cooker, use that, they’re brilliant. If not, to cook the black rice add 3 cups of water to every 1 cup of rice. To serve 2 people, you’ll need 2 cups of rice and 6 cups of water. Garnish the black rice with raw white sesame seeds if you wish.
For Curry Paste
Dried red chillies, chopped, 6
Ground coriander, 1 tbsp
Sweet paprika, 1 tbsp
Ground cumin, 1 tbsp
Ground turmeric, 1 tbsp
Fresh lemon grass, chopped, 2 stalks
Fresh or dried galangal, peeled & chopped, 1 large piece
Fresh ginger, peeled & chopped, 1 large nob
Natural peanuts or cashews, 5-6
Garlic cloves, chopped, 2-3
Coconut oil, 1 tbsp
White onion, diced, 1/2
Chinese red dates, pitted, 3
For The Curry
800ml mineral water, 800ml
300 ml pure coconut milk, 400ml
Fresh lotus root, 1 large
Chinese Kale (purple or green), a few handfuls
Other leafy green vegetable (i.e. pak choi or choy sum), a handful
Fresh shiitake mushrooms, 160-200g
Laksa-style curry paste (see above), 3-4 heaped tbsp
Spring onions, finely chopped, 4-5
Star anise, 2-3
Fresh coriander, finely chopped, to garnish
1. Make the curry paste by blending all ingredients together in a blender until smooth and thick.
2. Pour the water, coconut milk, curry paste and the star anise into a large wok and bring to boil.
3. Meanwhile, peel and slice the lotus root, slice the shiitake mushrooms and Chinese kale. Sometimes Chinese kale is more stalk than leaves, if this is the case, separate them and cut the stalks up ready to add to the curry earlier than the leaves because the stalks take a lot longer to cook.
4. Roughly chop the Chinese kale leaves, other leafy green, coriander and spring onions and set aside for later.
5. When boiling, add the shiitake mushrooms and leave for 5 minutes, then add the lotus root and leave for another 10 minutes. Add the Chinese kale stalks and leave on a low heat to boil for 10 more minutes (or until the liquid has reduced to at least half and is beginning to thicken).
6. When the ingredients are cooked and you’re happy with the consistency and flavour of the curry, turn off the heat and add the Chinese kale leaves, other leafy greens and half of the spring onions.
7. Fold them in and cover the curry, allow the rest of the ingredients to lightly steam (there’s no need to cook green leaves and spring onion, they take seconds to wilt).
8. Garnish with fresh chopped coriander and serve with steamed black rice.
Make a variation of the Laksa-style curry paste in a style you prefer. You can tweak the ingredients to get something more to your tastes (i.e. spicier). If you really prefer not to make your own curry paste but have found a brand you like (that doesn’t contain artificial flavouring, colouring or preservatives) then you can always use that as your curry paste base.