Monday, June 8, 2015

Fresh Bamboo Shoot Red Curry (+ Basil Stir Fry)

About one month ago, a friend from Thailand came over and she helped me harvest, process, and then cook the fresh bamboo shoots that were starting to show up in my yard.  They pop out of the ground like round swords, but are actually tender and very easy to just break off.  You peel the bamboo, and then chop it, and boil it twice until tender.  This also gets rid of any trace levels of cyanide that might be in the bamboo (some plant foods contain natural levels of cyanide.  Only some bamboo species contain it, but you should boil to make sure).
Bamboo shoots plucked right from my lawn.
Peeled bamboo shoots, ready to be chopped.  We didn't use the larger green parts; just the more tender top parts.
All chopped up.  You can chop lengthwise, or into coins.
Boiling.  Boil twice, (drain after each time) each time for about 10 minutes or more.
Thai Basil Stir Fry with Bamboo Shoots, above
Fresh Bamboo Shoot Curry 
from my friend P.W.

fresh bamboo shoots 
one can coconut milk
Thai red curry paste
favorite veggie, such as a bell pepper
chicken, about 1 breast
fresh basil, chopped
fish sauce
palm sugar
white rice, for serving

1. Prepare the bamboo shoots.  Peel all the outer skin off.  Only use the tender parts.  If the bottom is not tender, discard it.  Chop up the tender part of the bamboo.  Fill a large pot with salted water, and bring to a boil.  Add the chopped bamboo shoots about boil for 10-15 minutes. Drain.  Fill the pot with salted water again, and bring to a boil again. Add the bamboo shoots and boil for another 5-10 minutes.  Drain.  

2.  In a large skillet, add the cream from the top of the can of coconut milk.  Add as much red curry paste as you want and let it cook into the coconut cream.  Add the chicken, bamboo shoots, any other veggies, and the rest of the coconut milk from the can.  Cook until everything is cooked through, adding palm sugar, fish sauce, and fresh basil to taste.  Enjoy over steamed white rice.

Chicken basil stir fry, pictured right, and bamboo chicken red curry, pictured left.

Thai Basil Chicken Stir Fry
from my friend P.W.

prepared bamboo shoots (see #1 in recipe above)
boneless chicken, cut into strips
fresh basil
oyster sauce
steamed rice, for serving

1.  Heat the oil in a large skillet.  Add the chicken and prepared bamboo shoots, and cook and stir until the chicken is cooked through.  Add the oyster sauce to taste, and the fresh basil.  Serve with steamed rice.  

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