This has actually been happening to be a lot recently, and I’m loving it. Nuts, coconut milk, and crunchy vegetables are some of my favorite ways to keep a recipe vegan while still having great big flavor. Sometimes I do it on purpose, sometimes it just works out, like with this soup.
This soup was an “I hate to waste anything ever” invention, and it turned out so well that I’ve made it a few more times, this time for you! When our house was on the market (RIP to that idea) we ate more takeout than I’d care to admit, and one of my favorite takeout options is Indian. It’s a killer excuse to order 3 entrees for 2 people and eat Indian for a few days in a row, which is basically my version of heaven. BUT, they always send so much rice. Enough for rice on rice on rice for days after the curries are gone. I hate wasting food, we had some rice languishing in the fridge, soup was born.
It’s silky and creamy from the coconut milk, hearty from the rice and tofu, and has a light quality from the bok choy. I’ve served this plain or with lime juice and cilantro over top, and either way is delicious. Leftover haters unite!
You need onion and garlic for the base, a brick of tofu, some baby bok choy, coconut milk, cooked rice, and vegetable stock. You can use any other kind of stock if you aren’t vegan, but vegetable is delicious!
The prep is like anything else – chop onion, mince garlic, cube tofu, slice bok choy. I like ribbons of bok choy for this, and I do 1-inch cubes of tofu, give or take. Big bite-sized!
Start the soup with a little drizzle of olive oil in a soup pot over medium heat, then add the onion and garlic.
Let the veg cook for about 3 minutes to soften the onion, then add the curry powder. I had a really mild yellow blend, but if you have a strong or spicy blend you can start with 2 tablespoons of curry powder and add more at the end if you’d like.
Stir the curry powder into the onion mixture, then add the stock and coconut milk. Let the liquids simmer for about 10 minutes, then add the tofu and bok choy.
Bring THAT to a simmer and let it cook for 5 minutes or so, stirring as you go, just to soften the bok choy. When the vegetables have wilted and the soup is hot, add the rice to the pot. Taste the soup, and add salt or more curry powder for extra flavor.
Simmer the soup for 5 minutes more (or longer if you have it, but it’s not necessary), then serve! Lime and cilantro are great toppers, or not if you’re a moron like me and forget them half the time. No biggie!
The simplicity of this soup is of course appealing, but the warm curry flavor and crunchy vegetables with the coconut base give every bit of an allusion of all-day simmering. This rice/curry base could be used for any number of proteins and vegetables, so change it up every time you make it for variety.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons yellow curry powder
- 1 brick tofu, cubed
- 4 heads baby bok choy, thinly sliced
- 1 can coconut milk
- 2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
- 2 cups cooked rice (a great use for leftovers!)
- salt, to taste
- lime wedges and cilantro, optional, for serving
To a large soup pot, add the olive oil, onion, and garlic over medium heat. Stir for 3 minutes to soften the onion, then add the curry powder.
Stir the curry powder for one minute until it is fragrant, then add the coconut milk and stock. Bring the soup to a simmer and cook the mixture for 10 minutes to reduce it slightly, stirring as you go.
Add the bok choy and tofu cubes to the soup. Stir for 3 minutes to soften the bok choy and heat the tofu.
Stir in the rice. Taste the soup and add salt to your preference. Bring the soup back to a simmer before serving. Garnish with lime wedges or cilantro if you'd like.
Vegan if vegetable stock is used.