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Thai-Spiced Sweet Potato Stew

No recipe image available.With Thai ingredients available at most natural foods stores and well-stocked supermarkets, it has become easy to enjoy the delightful flavors of this cuisine at home. Use your discretion with the red or green curry paste; a little will give a hint of heat, but if you want a spicier stew, you can step it up from there.

Recipe Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, quartered and thinly sliced
4 to 6 cloves garlic, minced
3 medium-large sweet potatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds), peeled and diced
3 cups water
1 medium green or red bell pepper, cut into narrow strips
1 1/2 cups frozen green beans
1/2 teaspoon red or green curry paste, more or less to taste
1 tablespoon natural granulated sugar
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
2 stalks lemongrass (optional)
1 (14 to 15-ounce) can light coconut milk
2 tablespoons natural peanut butter
Salt to taste
1 (8-ounce) package White Wave Thai peanut flavored baked tofu, diced (optional)
Cilantro leaves for topping

Cooking Directions:

  1. Heat the oil in a soup pot. Add the onion and sauté over medium-low heat until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté until both are golden.
  2. Add the sweet potatoes and water. Bring to a rapid simmer, then lower the heat. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the sweet potatoes are about half done.
  3. Add the bell pepper, green beans, curry paste, sugar, and ginger. If using lemongrass, cut each stalk into 3 or 4 pieces, and bruise by making long cuts here and there with a sharp knife. This will help release the lemony flavor. Stir into the soup pot. Simmer the stew for 10 minutes longer.
  4. Stir in the coconut milk, peanut butter, salt, and optional tofu. Return to a simmer, then cook over very low heat for another 10 minutes, or until all the vegetables are tender and the flavors well integrated.
  5. Remove lemongrass pieces. Taste to adjust seasonings, particularly the curry paste if you’d like a spicier stew, as well as the salt, sugar, and ginger. Serve at once, topping each serving with a few cilantro leaves.

Makes 6 servings.

Recipe provided courtesy of Nava Atlas; www.vegkitchen.com.