Prep Time: 5 Mins
I hardly ate sayur lodeh when I lived back home in Singapore because it just seemed like such an unassuming dish. But somehow, after moving away, this Malay coconut vegetable curry has become one of my favourite comfort foods, bringing back the memories and tastes of home.
Depending on who is making the sayur lodeh and how health conscious they are, this coconut vegetable curry can range from orange/yellow with a small touch of coconut milk, to pale with large amounts of coconut milk. I am not a vegan for health reasons, so… my version is almost white and super creamy. If you are worried about fat or sugar content, feel free to substitute up to half the coconut milk used in this recipe with water or vegetable stock.
Cut the carrots and beans into thumb lengths, the tofu into small blocks, and the cabbage into medium-sized pieces. Roughly chop all the ingredients for the spice paste (rempah). Blend the rempah ingredients along with 1 tbsp of oil in a blender, or pound into a paste with a mortar and pestle.
Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a non-stick pot and over low heat and stir fry (tumis) the rempah.
Keep the heat low and keep doing your tumis until the rempah is well cooked and darkened, about 10 minutes.
Add coconut milk (and water/stock if using) to the pot, mix well to dissolve the rempah, and turn the heat up to medium. When the curry reaches a gentle boil, add the carrot, beans and cabbage. Turn the stove back down to low and leave the curry to cook for 15 minutes. Usually I leave the lid half-on at this point.
Add the tofu to the curry and cook for another 5 minutes. By the end of this, the vegetables should be super soft and basically you should be able to drink the curry without chewing.