You can’t beat Thai curry paste in the convenience department. If you have a jar of it and a can of coconut milk, you’re ready to make curry out of any vegetable or protein in your pantry. The only problem is that the most popular Thai curry paste (I won’t name names, but you probably have a jar of it in your cupboard right now) is so tame that I often find myself emptying the whole jar into one pot, just to give my curry some flavor. That’s why this soup, created by Epicurious contributor Mindy Fox, has extra doses of garlic, ginger, and fish sauce. If it seems like the type of thing that you’d want to eat for dinner, go for it—the soup serves four, with plenty left over for a couple of lunches (it will last in the fridge for up to three days).
- Yield: 6 Servings
- 2 (13.5-ounce) cans coconut milk (preferably full-fat)
- ¼ cup red curry paste (about ½ of an 8-ounce jar)
- 2 large scallions, thinly sliced, plus more for serving
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh ginger
- 1 small garlic clove, grated or fïnely chopped
- 2 teaspoons (packed) light or dark brown sugar
- Kosher salt
- 1 (14-ounce) package soft or silken tofu, drained and cut into ¾-inch cubes
- 5 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and caps thinly sliced
- 1 (5-ounce) package baby spinach
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, plus wedges for serving
- 1 teaspoon fish sauce
- Fresh cilantro leaves, for serving
- In a large saucepan, whisk together the coconut milk, red curry paste, scallions, ginger, garlic, sugar, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, and 2½ cups water. Set over medium heat and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes. Add the tofu and mushrooms; return the soup to a simmer and continue cooking until the mushrooms are tender, about 5 minutes more. Stir in the spinach and cook just until wilted, about 1 minute. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the lime juice and fish sauce. Taste and add more kosher salt if it needs it (it may need a teaspoon or more).
- Ladle the soup into bowls. Top with cilantro and more sliced scallion, and serve with lime wedges on the side.