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"To read a book about a country's cuisine isn't simply to go looking for 'good things'; it is also to better know - by means of the recipes - the customs and the richness or poverty of a place, and the spirit of those who inhabit it. It is above all, to participate in the symbolic celebration of the shared repast."

~ Ginette Olivesi-Lorenzi, La Cuisine Mentonnaise



Savoring Tuscany : Recipes and Reflections on Tuscan Cooking

Savoring Tuscany : Recipes and Reflections on Tuscan Cooking (The Savoring Series)
by Lori De Mori

Part of the Savoring Series, which is one of my favorite series of books about Regional Cuisine, Savoring Tuscany is a beautiful book filled with sumptuous recipes and delectable writing about the cuisine and culture of Tuscany. As with all the books in the series, Savoring Tuscany is put together beautifully and all of the recipes are well written and presented. The recipes that we tested were all superb and the book is an excellent source for fans of Tuscan cuisine.


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Recipe - Thai Style Mushroom Spinach Curry
by Wen Zientek-Sico

This is indeed a Thai style dish as it was more of a kitchen experiment than anything else. Thai cooks do use spinach and mushrooms, so it probably isn't too terribly non-traditional. You can use any favorite mushroom or green leafy vegetable in this recipe with excellent results. Serve this dish with its fragrant sauce over jasmine rice or soft noodles.

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Thai Style Mushroom Spinach Curry

This is indeed a Thai style dish as it was more of a kitchen experiment than anything else. Thai cooks do use spinach and mushrooms, so it probably isn't too terribly non-traditional. You can use any favorite mushroom or green leafy vegetable in this recipe with excellent results. Serve this dish with its fragrant sauce over jasmine rice or soft noodles.

3 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup chopped shallots
1/4 cup chopped garlic
3/4 pound sliced white mushrooms
1/2 pound trimmed and washed baby spinach leaves
1 1/2 cups coconut milk
2 teaspoons Basic Red Curry Paste
2 tablespoons Thai fish sauce
1 tablespoon palm sugar or light brown sugar
1/4 cup minced Thai basil

Heat the olive oil in a large heavy wok or skillet over medium high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms release their liquid and it evaporates, about five minutes. Add the spinach leaves and sauté for 2-3 more minutes, or until the mushrooms are golden brown and the spinach is wilted. In a medium bowl whisk together the coconut milk, curry paste, fish sauce, and palm sugar until smooth. Add it to the skillet and stir well. Cook for 5-6 minutes to heat through. Add the basil and serve hot.

Makes 6 servings.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This recipe is part of our special feature on Thai Curries: Thai Curry - Adding the Flavors of Thailand to Your Table Tablespoon by Tablespoon. Read the article for hints and tips about making and using Thai curry pastes along with dozens more great recipes.