Thai is my favorite non-Indian cuisine. The variety of noodles, rice and curries in Thai cuisine is amazingly huge. The more I dug into it, the more I liked! Massaman curry or Gaeng Masaman is a curry from South Thailand. Masaman means "muslim". The dry spices used in this curry paste are thought to be brought over to Thailand by Muslim traders. Hence the name. I use Maesri curry pastes in my Thai cooking at home. The end result has always been wonderful and taste just like the restaurant version. They come in convenient little one-time-use cans and make Thai cooking a breeze. I read somewhere that many Thai restaurants in the US use Maesri pastes too!
Info on the curry and the recipe is from here. The curry paste has a LOT of oil. So I used coconut cream to fry the paste in, instead of more oil as the recipe suggested. I normally add fish sauce as well but I cooked this specifically for the vegan event and so skipped that here.
Update: Apparently, the massaman paste contains shrimp paste as well. I checked the ingredients on the Maesri tin and it does not list shrimp paste as one of them. I do believe it is vegan.
1 small can massaman curry paste (about 4 tbsp)
1 can coconut milk
1 medium onion, sliced
2 potatoes, cut into big sized pieces
1 small block of tofu, cut into chunks
1 tbsp cashews (or roasted peanuts)
1-2 bay leaves
3-4 cardamom pods
1/4 cup water
1 tsp palm sugar (or brown sugar)
1/2 tsp tamarind paste
Into a heated pot, put about 1 tsp of coconut cream and the massaman paste. Fry for 2-3 minutes.
Add the thick coconut cream that's on top of the coconut milk can. Mix and simmer until the oil separates.
Add potatoes, onions, tofu, the remaining coconut milk from the can, bay leaves and cardamom pods. Add some water, if too think. Mix well. Cover and cook on low for at least 15-20 minutes.
Add palm sugar and tamarind paste. Simmer for a few more minutes.
Serve with fragrant jasmine rice or rotis.