Here is the standard conversation I have when I tell people I have a food blog and/or that I host supper clubs:
Me: “I have an Asian fusion food blog called Mango Ginger. And I host supper clubs where I cook the recipes”
Random person: “Really? How interesting. Why?”
Me: “Why what?”
RP: “Why do you do it? Do you make money from it?”
Me: “No, not really.”
RP: “Do you want to open a restaurant?”
Me: “No. I already have a job. I just like food. And I like other people who like food.”
RP: “Oh. How interesting [or other such baffled or dismissive remark].”
Me: Sighhhh [with the air of a misunderstood artist]
But it makes perfect sense to me. And it makes perfect sense to my new friend Ramya. I met her online (as all the kids are doing these days), sharing recipes on a food bloggers’ forum call Food Buzz – she has an awesome blog called Mistress of Spices, check it out. It turns out that in addition to our shared food obsession and similar day jobs, we both live in
. So we have also met up in real life and Ramya was a guest and reviewer at my last supper club. And that, my friends, is why I blog – because it’s a passport into a world of passionate an interesting foodies. Bangkok
Anyway, Ramya is a veggie and I realised when I was making her tofu dish for the supper club that I have neglected my inner vegetarian of late. It’s a common misconception that Thai food is veggie friendly – most dishes contain meat or at least fish sauce or dried shimps. But the good news is that it’s not hard to make a few tweaks and substitutions to come up with a meat-free delight. As a former veggie, being served this would have made me leap up and hug the person who had cooked it.
Time: 30 mins
Rating: Easy. Luxury doesn’t have to be hard work.
100g shitake mushrooms
100g oyster mushrooms
100g sugar snap peas
150g tofu (either firm or deep fried)
40g macademia nuts
1 clove garlic
1 small red chilli
½ red onion
1 tbsp tamarind paste (if you can't find it, mix lime juice with a little ketchup)
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp brown sugar
- Finely slice the red onion and garlic. Finely chop the chilli.
- Then prepare the vegetables: cut both kinds of mushroom into large chunks. Trim the sugar snap peas. Cut the carrot into thin slices.
- Cut the tofu into large chunks.
- Heat a little oil in a wok over a high flame. Add the onion, garlic and chilli. Fry for about 30 seconds stirring constantly. Add the tamarind paste, soy sauce and sugar and stir well. Next add the tofu and stir till coated. Continue frying for about a minute.
- Add the remaining vegetables. Continue to cook stirring constantly for about 5-7 minutes until the vegetables have softened a little but not soggy. Add the nuts and cook for another minute.
- Remove from the wok and serve with steamed rice.