Grilled zucchini with the Dirt Candy cookbook’s Yellow Tomato Coconut Curry Sauce
Amanda Cohen was born and raised in Canada. Some years ago, she went to study in New York and has made that city her home ever since. These days, she has good reason to stay; her famous Dirt Candy eatery – what she calls a “vegetable restaurant” – located on the Lower East Side, is a huge hit.
I met Amanda at the lively 10th annual Terroir Symposium held at the Art Gallery of Ontario in her home town – Toronto.
Before our chat, I did some research. That included trying this recipe from the Dirt Candy cookbook she wrote with Ryan Dunlavey cleverly illustrated with step-by-step cartoons.
This sauce leapt out at me. And good choice – it’s easy to make and downright delicious.
Yellow Tomato Coconut Curry Sauce
I used regular red grape tomatoes and happened to have some African curry powder. Gorgeous-looking and perfect with grilled vegetables, on noodles or in curry.
3/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
8 large red or yellow tomatoes, coarsely chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup diced yellow onion
2 tbsp chopped garlic
2 tbsp chopped fresh ginger root
2 tbsp berber seasoning or curry powder
1 stalk lemongrass, cut in 1-inch pieces
2 cups canned coconut milk
Grated zest of 2 lemons
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
Salt to taste
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Spread coconut flakes on baking sheet; toast in oven until golden brown, about 10 minutes.
Pulse tomatoes in blender until they form a chunky sauce.
Add olive oil, onion, garlic and ginger root to medium saucepan. Heat over medium heat until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add toasted coconut; cook, stirring, about 5 minutes. Add berber seasoning and lemongrass; cook 5 more minutes.
Add tomatoes, coconut milk, lemon zest and red pepper flakes. Bring to simmer over medium heat; simmer over low heat 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and push through a strainer to make a smooth sauce. Salt to taste.
Makes about 4 cups.