Thai Red Curry with Eggplant and Sweet Peppers: A one pot simple weeknight curry that comes together in about 30 minutes and is freezer friendly too! Serve with Jasmine rice or naan | vegan + gluten free
While pressing the tofu (see notes)**, preheat the oven to 350F (178C). After pressing the tofu, bake it for about 20-25 minutes, or until golden. Remove from oven and set aside.
In a large Dutch oven, add the coconut oil and heat until it shimmers. Turn the heat to medium high and add the eggplant and onion. Stir fry for about 6-8 minutes or until the vegetables begin to soften. It's okay of the eggplant sticks a bit.
Stir in the bell peppers and stir fry for about one minute, just to soften a bit. Add the garlic and ginger. Stir for another minute, scraping the bottom of the pot - the garlic and ginger will start to stick. Add the curry paste and red pepper flakes. Take a big inhale..... ahhhh. Cook, stirring for a minute more, coating the vegetables with the paste. Stir in the brown sugar and deglaze the pot with broth and coconut milk. Stir in the tofu or chickpeas. Bring to a simmer, turn to low and cook for about 10 minutes just until heated through. Stir in the Tamari and lime juice.
Remove from heat and spoon over rice. Top with Thai basil, cilantro, and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve with additional Tamari and lime wedges.
Store in a lidded container for up to three days or up to two weeks in the freezer. Thaw in the fridge overnight and gently rewarm on the stovetop.
*Chickpea option! Use 1 1/2 C (248g) of chickpeas instead of tofu. Simply stir in the chickpeas when the tofu is called for in the recipe. If using canned, be sure to drain the chickpeas before adding them.
**If time permits, freeze the tofu when you bring it home from the store. Something magical happens in the freezer. Thaw it in the refrigerator overnight, before use. Since tofu is packaged in water, we need press the water out of it to make room for flavor! To press thawed tofu, use a tea towel and place it under and on top of the tofu. Set it on a plate. Place something heavy on top, like a cutting board, another plate or a not-so-full box of wine to press the water out. We don't want it too heavy or it will squash the tofu. Move the tea towel a few times to a dryer area of the towel so it can absorb more water. Press for about 20-30 minutes, up to an hour if you have time.