These coconut curry noodles with grilled pickled vegetables are a quick and simple spicy noodle dish- inspired by bahn mi and thai coconut curry, and delicious hot or cold.
If it wasn’t for those charred pickled vegetables this would fall into the weekday food in my mouth right now catagory. But those veggies are worth the bit of time and effort if you’ve got it. That has always been my one complaint about bahn mi, the raw taste of the jalapeno and carrot. I usually pickle the veggies but the grilling adds just a hint of sweetness and smoke while keeping the crunch.
You can either grill the vegetables before pickling if you happen to have the grill out or char them in a hot cast iron pan over high heat, you can also- of course-use a different sort of pepper or add other veggies of your choice. radish?!
a note on ingredients
I am fortunate enough to have several asian supermarkets to choose from so I usually have a few different curry pastes in the fridge (I know I could make them but I have to draw the line somewhere) so for this batch I used the sour vegetable curry paste which is mostly shallot, red chile, and shrimp paste.
For fish sauce the red boat is considerably more expensive but worth it if you want just the basics (ie no added sugar) but otherwise Tiparos is 1/8th the price and perfectly fine in a soup or sauce, but they do add sugar. Here’s a nice comparison if you’re curious.
Coconut Curry Noodles with grilled pickled vegetables
for the pickled vegetables
- 1 medium carrot cut into sticks- unless you are grilling to char than either halve or leave whole
- 1 jalapeno
- 3-4 garlic scapes
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- a pinch of pepper flakes
for the curry
- 8 ounces of long noodles of choice- squid ink spaghetti regular spaghetti, or black rice soba noodles- cooked al dente
- 16 ounces coconut milk or 500mL
- 2 tablespoons or to taste curry paste- either yellow or sour
- 1 tsp minced ginger
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- fish sauce to taste usually about 1/2 tsp or less, several shakes
- juice from half a lime
- cilantro for garnish
- about an hour before assembling the rest of the dish grill or char until the outside is just blackened. allow to cool enough to cut and then slice into sticks or long narrow slices. place the veggies in a small bowl and top with the rice vinegar and dash of pepper flakes
- cook the noodles as directed (if using soba undercook slightly) drain and set aside
- in a large cast iron pan over medium heat add the curry paste, ginger, and garlic, allow to cook for a minute or two to soften the garlic and ginger
- add the coconut milk, lime, and fish sauce and whisk to throughly combine. taste and adjust seasoning as necessary.
- allow to simmer for about 15 minutes.
- remove from heat and add noodles. serve topped with pickled veggies and cilantro