This bright, healthy, and comforting bowl of green coconut curry chickpeas is a 20 minute meatless meal absolutely bursting with flavor.
You know what’s hard? Having a baby and maintaining a blog. That’s what. But here I am…five (plus) months later doing just that. I’m basically amazing. But seriously, parenting is a lot, returning to work in a COVID-19 world is a lot, and the blog is the thing that’s most likely to just lift out of circulation when sleep deprivation makes all the decisions (Jo is zombie now, thank you, sleep now).
But buoyed by some very supportive internet friends, I find myself here, writing to you. And it feels pretty good. That being said, I honestly don’t know the frequency with which I’ll be posting here. I’d love to get back to once a week, perhaps even twice if I suddenly become independently wealthy and can afford full time child care, but who knows, right? Life is crazy.
But I will try, and so I hope you’ll check back in every so often to see what I’ve been getting into with life and food and cats and now BABY (who may or may not be getting her own blog post sometime in the near future – if you’re into that kind of thing).
So without further ado, here is a blog post that I started writing when I was literally in the hospital going into active labor, five months ago. It has not been extensively proofread or edited, because who has time for that anymore? But it does feature a thing we eat here pretty much weekly, because it’s exceedingly delicious, unbelievably fast, and easier than pie (because as I believe we’ve discussed before, pie is not actually all that easy).
Green Coconut Curry Chickpeas
I’ve been really into sauces lately. Specifically those that are super flavorful, easy to make, and can transform a simple protein and some random veggies into a complete meal in a matter of minutes. And while there are plenty of those on the market, ready for action, I prefer to take the extra ten minutes to make my own.
Make Your Own Curry Paste
This particular sauce is really just what happens when you whisk a vibrant curry paste into creamy coconut milk, and yes it is that easy. Of course you can use storebought curry paste (because honestly it’s very good, and a great pantry staple to have around) but if you’re into the idea of making your own then I am here for you.
This is by no means a very authentic curry paste, but it’s generally inspired by and somewhat modeled after a Thai green curry. Also it doesn’t have a ton of fussy ingredients and can be made well in advance – so, score.
How do you make it then? Well just take all the ingredients (conveniently listed in the recipe card below) and buzz them up in a food processor or blender. Don’t have one of those? Feel free to pound them all using a mortar and pestle, or even just chop everything finely with a knife. Store the paste covered in the fridge for up to three days, or in the freezer for a month.
Bringing Your Coconut Curry to Life
When it’s time to make dinner, throw a few big spoonfuls of paste into a hot pan, stirring it to open up all the flavors. Then whisk in some full fat coconut milk and bring the whole thing to a simmer. Season to taste with salt and lime juice and throw in whatever protein and veggies you’d care to. Cook for ten minutes and serve over rice, noodles, or with some sort of dippy type bread situation.
That’s it! Seriously, THAT IS IT. It’s a ridiculous payoff for so little work and makes great leftovers for lunch the next day.
Tips For Making Coconut Curry
- Use all the zippiest, freshest ingredients you can find – this is not the time for the saddest basil or weakest jalapeno in the crisper drawer
- Make it ahead and store in an airtight container – that way dinner is mere minutes away!
- Season it aggressively. All the bright, spicy, salty flavors will mellow out once fat and heat and liquid get involved, so make sure the curry paste itself is intensely flavored.
- Don’t let this sit around forever. Honestly, it will still taste awesome, but the color fades from brilliant green to less than photogenic after about 20 minutes of sitting in a warmish pan.
- Serve with rice, or over noodles, or saute up a bunch of extra veggies before adding the curry paste to round out this simple, weeknight meal.
Green Coconut Curry Chickpeas
Intensely flavored, vibrantly green, healthy and satisfying – green coconut curry chickpeas are my new favorite weeknight meal.
- Prep Time: 5 Minutes
- Cook Time: 10 Minutes
- Total Time: 15 minutes
- Yield: 4 Servings 1x
- Category: Dinner
- Cuisine: Easy
1 3 inch piece of ginger, sliced
1 jalapeno pepper
1 T sambal paste
2 T sugar
2 t fish sauce
2 C basil leaves, tightly packed
1 C parsley or mint leaves, tightly packed
2 cloves garlic
2 T vegetable oil
1 T lime zest
1 14 ounce can coconut milk
2 14 ounce cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
6 C baby spinach
2 T lime juice
Add ginger, jalapeno, sambal, sugar, fish sauce, basil, parsley, garlic, vegetable oil, and lime zest to a food processor or blender. Process until pureed (it won’t becoming completely smooth – that’s ok).
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the paste and saute for 1 minute. Add the coconut milk and whisk until combined. Stir in chickpeas and spinach and simmer until spinach is wilted, about 5 minutes. Add lime juice and season to taste with more salt if desired.
Serve immediately over rice or noodles.
Curry paste can be made up to 3 days ahead and stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
You can substitute any leafy green for spinach, but don’t let it sit too long, or the color will go from vibrant green to mushy peas.
Feel free to use all basil or all parsley for this if you don’t have a combo.
Keywords: green coconut curry, easy weeknight dinner, thai inspired dinner