This week, I made a vegan coconut curry. While vegans tend to get some flak, decreasing your meat intake is an easy way to decrease your environmental footprint. Curries are so versatile and easily customizable and are perfect for vegans and carnivores alike.

Tamari Dzotsenidze / Daily Nexus

This curry has a sweet, mild flavor based in coconut milk, and even if you aren’t a big fan of veggies, it’s easy to throw some in to get your vitamins without compromising on flavor.

 

Ingredients:

1 can of coconut milk

1 package of extra firm tofu

Several cloves of garlic

1 inch of ginger

1 ¼ cups of rice

2 tbsp of coconut oil

Spices (cinnamon, curry powder, salt, pepper, turmeric, cloves, cayenne pepper, cumin)

Tamari Dzotsenidze / Daily Nexus

The curry can be eaten over anything, but for a budget-friendly option, I like to put it over rice, which is regularly available at the A.S. Food Bank. To start the rice, first peel and chop the garlic and ginger into small pieces.

In the pot you’ll use for rice, drizzle enough oil to cover the pot, and once it has heated up, toss in the garlic and ginger, stirring frequently. Once they have browned, add the rice. Continue to fry the rice for about two minutes until the grains start to whiten. Add 2 ½  cups of water, keep heat on medium-high and cover. Once it starts to boil, stir and lower the heat. Add a dash of cinnamon, turmeric, salt and black pepper. Cover and let steam for about 20 minutes.

While the rice is steaming, cut the tofu into bite-size pieces, and use a paper towel to blot the extra moisture. Grease a pan and put it on high heat. Season the tofu with salt, pepper, turmeric and cayenne, and fry until the edges brown to your desired level of crispness.

The curry sauce is extremely simple: one can of coconut milk heated and mixed with curry powder, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper and ground cloves. I didn’t have curry powder on hand, so instead I used cumin, turmeric, coriander and fennel. Start with a dash of seasoning, and then add more to taste. Afterward, add any fresh or frozen vegetables and heat until they are a consistent temperature.

 

This recipe comes out to around 500 calories per serving, with about 25 grams of fats, 54 grams of carbs and 17 grams of protein. To increase the amount of protein and decrease the amount of carbs, you can replace the tofu with chicken. It makes five portions, which can easily be microwaved. The curry itself can also easily be made in larger batches and frozen.

An easy way to way decrease the calorie count of this dish is to switch to low-fat coconut milk, which cuts about 30 calories per serving.

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