~ Paleo, Vegan ~
Most of us have heard that old proverb “variety is the spice of life” and we all know that new and exciting experiences keep life fresh and interesting. So when it comes to food in particular, why do we find ourselves routinely eating the same things day in and out? Well, it turns out that we are creatures of habit – I hope this isn’t coming as surprise to you! As much as we like the idea of variety, we tend to stick to the same things for good reason.
We are complex individuals, our days involve multiple behaviors and often require several tasks to be completed at the same time. Developing these behavioral patterns or habits makes life easier because it allows us to be disengaged in the performance of a task so that it becomes automatic & effortless. Decreasing the number of decisions you need to make on a daily basis can make a huge difference to your overall well-being – & help prevent marital warfare in the supermarket aisles!
When it comes to food and maintaining a healthy diet, having good practices or habits in place can be key. Things such as food prep and planning your meals in advance are vital to the success of anyone attempting to alter their eating habits & looking to lose weight. The trouble with this is that it can easily lead to boredom as we repeat the same meal plans over and over again. I’m all for keeping things simple but an unappetising meal often leads to temptation, with snacking typically following & before you know it you’re mindlessly shovelling handfuls of caramel popcorn into your mouth without even knowing how the bag got in your house!
The key here really is to be mindful. If your meals are starting to get a little monotonous or you find yourself full but unsatisfied, then it’s time to change things up. Spend a little extra time in the kitchen getting creative and make something you really want to eat. When in doubt, I always like to add a little extra spice and go for dishes like this thai green curry that have a rich flavour profile as well as some heat.
If you’re looking to save time you can buy your own Thai Green Curry paste, but I highly recommend making your own (make a big batch & freeze it!) It really doesn’t take that long but the difference in flavour is huge.
Curry paste (for roughly 8)
- 4-6 medium green chillies, de-seeded & chopped
- 2 shallots roughly chopped
- a thumb of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 2 garlic cloves crushed
- small bunch of fresh coriander
- 2 lemongrass stalks, chopped
- 1 lime, grated and juiced
- 8 kaffir lime leaves
- 1/2 thumb of galangal, peeled and chopped (if available)
- 1 tbsp coriander seeds, crushed
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp black peppercorns, crushed
- 2 tsp thai fish sauce (or substitute for Bragg’s liquid amino acids or dulse flakes if vegan)
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- Place all ingredients in a food processor and blitz until a paste has formed. You can use it straight away or store it in a mason jar in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
Thai Green Curry (serves 3-4) & Cauliflower Rice (4-5 cups)
- 2-3 cups of an assortment of veggies (mixed mushrooms, sugar snap peas, bok choy & red onion are what I used)
- 1-2 thai red chilli peppers deseeded & chopped into rings (optional if you want more spice!)
- 1lb of fresh or defrosted pre-cooked prawns with tails removed (or substitute for additional veggies or tofu if making vegan/vegetarian)
- 1 cup full fat coconut milk
- 1 bunch of coriander chopped for garnish
- 1 lime (optional to add a good squeeze to your curry before serving)
- 1 head of cauliflower chopped for cauliflower rice
- 1/2 cup shredded coconut
- 1/2 tbsp coconut oil or butter
- drizzle of honey (optional)
- If substituting tofu or any other meat then gently brown your protein in a skillet with a splash of coconut oil. Don’t cook it all the way through. Remove from the skillet and set to one side.
- Add 2-3 tbsp (I like it spicy) of your paste to the skillet and stir fry for 1-2 minutes so the spices start to toast a little.
- Add the coconut milk and mix in with the paste. Then add your veggies & thai peppers (have a little taste of your sauce first to check the heat) – things like bok choy and sugar snap peas can be added later when you add your protein if you like them a little crunchier. Simmer for 5 minutes.
- Whilst your veggies are simmering take your chopped cauliflower and either simmer for 10 minutes or microwave for roughly 3-5 minutes.
- Once your veggies have done simmering for 5 minutes it’s time to add your protein and any remaining vegetables. Simmer for another 5-10 minutes or until your veggies are cooked the way you like them & your protein is cooked through (if using chicken).
- During this time your cauliflower should now be finished steaming (slightly underdone is the consistency we’re looking for, not wet and mushy). Drain any excess water and then add your cauliflower to a food processor or blender. Give it a whizz until it begins to resemble the consistency of rice. Now add your shredded coconut, coconut oil or butter & a drizzle of honey if you want more of a sticky rice & a little bit of sweetness. Pulse a few more times so everything is nicely blended.
- Serve your thai green curry over the cauliflower rice, add freshly chopped coriander to garnish and a little squeeze of lime and enjoy!