Many of the Japanese I know are not fond of coconut milk. I cannot blame them-- I've never seen a coconut tree here. So I never bothered to use it in my recipes. But I also thought, I want to cook and eat it, so I will. And I did.
So last year, I cooked this recipe for the first time and asked my husband to taste a bit of it.
Then he asked me to cook it for dinner and his bento again. And then again. We ate it 5 times during that week.
Then a few weeks later, I found out from his mother that since he was a child, he has never liked curry. I was so surprised! Turns out, my husband doesn't like Japanese curry-- in which they put a bit of ketchup, Worcester sauce and apple to flavor it. (I've tasted it from a vegetarian restaurant in Nara City called "Kinatei" and for me, it is to-die-for! I couldn't get enough of it. But well, if I'm cooking for just 2 people, I'd prefer to cook this coco curry so that my husband will also eat. :P But I'll be posting a standardized version of vegan Japanese curry next time.)
Anyway, let's now go to the recipe!
potato, 195 g (about 3 small pieces)
carrot, 30 g
bell pepper, 25 g (about 1 piece)
coconut cream, 6 tbsp
VCP, 3/4 tsp
curry powder, 1 3/4 tsp
turmeric powder, 1/4 tsp
ajinomoto, 1/4 tsp (or salt, to taste)
oil, 1 tbsp
Cut potato into small bite-size chunks; cut carrots a bit smaller and thinner than the potato and; cut bell pepper into cubes.
Place nonstick pan over medium heat then pour over oil once it's hot.
Toss in the potatos, sprinkle with ajinomoto or salt and black pepper. Stir-fry for a few minutes, until some of the sides of the potatoes are golden brown. Then toss in the carrots. Stir-fry a little more.
Toss in the bell pepper. Season the vegetables with curry and turmeric powder. Mix well.
After a couple of minutes, pour in the coconut cream and sprinkle some VCP. Let it warm a little, then mix well.
Turn off heat. Be careful of over cooking after putting the coco cream or else, it will turn into oil and your curry will end up oily instead of coco-creamy.
Serve hot with steamy rice!
Tips and tricks
You may use coconut milk if you don't have cream. I personally like coco milk with this because I enjoy saucy curry, but I didn't have any other kind available so, I resorted to this. It was delicious, but as you can see from the picture, it's quite dry.
My husband likes putting eggplant to his curry and since I had some left over eggplant tempura the previous meal, I served it with the coco curry and garnished the whole plate with boiled broccoli, which my husband eats with sesame dressing.