I love Thai food. To the point where ordering from Royal Thai, my roomies and my favorite place in Chinatown, is a regular occurrence. I usually switch off between two traditional dishes, Pad Thai and Pad See Ew, but one night I tried the Tom Kha Gai, a coconut milk based soup.
This got me thinking about cooking with coconut milk, and then I stumbled on a recipe for Thai Coconut rice with Pineapple. I had some shrimp in the freezer so I decided to try the rice, and serve it with some Lime and Garlic Shrimp. Turns out it is a great meal for a warm spring evening. Lots of citrus and sweetness with a bit of a kick.
There was a bit of an oops, I must admit. I used frozen jasmine rice from Trader Joe’s, which is normally a great time saver, instead of following the directions and using uncooked rice. I recommend the latter, and just follow the directions. It still turned out yummy, but I learned my lesson. Sometimes shortcuts aren’t always the best call!
To start, I added all the ingredients to the coconut milk, to boil all the flavors together.
Swapping in light coconut milk for the regular in any recipe that calls for it is a great way to cut down on calories. You still get the same rich, sweet flavor that you get with the regular stuff, so why not?
While the rice is cooking in the broth, cook the shrimp and chop all the ingredients to add to the rice.
The shrimp is super easy, all you need is a few garlic cloves, some shrimp and the juice of 1 lime.
Once the rice is cooked, add the toppings to the pot. Don’t stir, just let them sit on top. Cover, and let stand for another 5 minutes so all the flavors seep together.
Stir it all up, and it is ready to eat!
I was surprised how easy this was to make! New ingredients sometimes intimidate me, but coconut milk is one I will now use all the time! If you are not a shrimp lover, I would definitely try adding chicken or tofu instead, I am sure it will still be yummy!
Lime and Garlic Shrimp
1 lb shrimp (can be frozen and then defrosted, or fresh!)
Juice of 1 lime
2 garlic cloves
Toss the lime juice and garlic in a skillet
Heat juice and garlic until simmering
Cook until shrimp turns bright and pink
Yields 4 servings
Thai Coconut and Pineapple Rice (adapted from Weight Watchers)
1 cup light coconut milk
1 cup water
2 tsp ginger root, minced
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup uncooked jasmine rice
1 cup pineapple, fresh and diced
1/2 cup scallions, chopped
1/4 tbsp mint, fresh and chopped
1/2 medium lime, cut into wedges
In a saucepan, combine the milk, water, ginger and salt
Bring to a boil over medium-high heat
Add in rice, stir, reduce heat
Cover, and simmer until liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes
Remove from heat
Add pineapple, scallions, mint and Lime and Garlic Shrimp (DO NOT STIR)
Cover, let stand for 5 minutes
Stir everything together, place in bowls, and garnish with lime to squeeze over the rice
Yields 4 generous, 1 cup servings