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Tofu Lemongrass

Somlah Kako
(Cambodian Vegetable Stew)

serves 4
all recipes below

Tofu Lemongrass
Lemongrass paste:

Blend all ingredients in blender until smooth – makes about 5 ‡ cups of paste. Ingredients:

- 6 medium stalks Lemongrass, thinly sliced
- 5 oz. shallots, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 5 oz. galangal, peeled and chopped
- 10 oz. garlic cloves
- 75 oz. kaffir lime leaves
- 1 oz. cilantro stems
- 1 ‡ t. turmeric powder
- About 4 cups water, to blend with

To Fry Tofu:

Choose extra firm tofu for this use.

To fry tofu: heat oil (canola or soybean) to 375 degrees in frylator or small wok, use enough oil to totally immerse the tofu slices. Slice Tofu into about 1 inch slices and deep fry until crisp and golden. Let cool and slice again into slices ‡ inch wide.

Stir-fry to assemble:

  1. Heat oil in sautÈ pan until hot. Add lemongrass paste and render for 30 seconds to one minute, depending on the quantity of the paste.
  2. Add sugar, salt and stir to mix. Add fried tofu slices and stir again to mix well with the paste. Add vegetable stock and cook for 1 minute.
  3. Add scallion, onion, red bell pepper, and ground peanuts and cook for another minute or so longer. The vegetables remain a bit crunchy.
  4. Plate and sprinkle with ground peanuts on top to garnish. Serve with jasmine rice.
(for 4 servings)

- 2 oz. oil
- 4 oz. lemongrass paste
- 3 oz. sugar
- 2 t. salt
- 4 squares or 4 cups fried tofu slices
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable stock
- 4 T. ground peanuts, roasted and coarsely ground
- 1 cup scallion, diagonally sliced into 2 inch pieces
- 1 cup onion, sliced into 1/4 inch thick wedges
- 1 cup red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 4 T. ground peanuts, to sprinkle for garnish

Somlah Kako
(Cambodian Vegetable Stew)

To make toasted rice powder: Place raw jasmine rice on a half sheet pan or tray and roast at 350 degrees oven for about 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool and grind to powder using a coffee grinder.

Heat oil in pot.

Add lemongrass paste and render for 30 seconds; add sugar and salt.

Add all the vegetables except for the spinach and mushrooms.

Stir to coat everything for a few minutes.

Add vegetable stock, bring to a simmer for about 5 minutes.

Add shitaake mushroom and oyster mushrooms and cook for 1 more minute.

Add toasted rice and spinach last, simmer for 1 minute longer.

Serve with jasmine rice and lots of chilies on the side.


- 2 oz. oil
- 2 ‡ cups lemongrass paste
- 1 t. sugar
- 2 t. salt
- 1 cup Japanese eggplant (can also use regular or Asian eggplant)
- 1 cup peeled butternut squash, cut into 2 inch pieces
- 1 cup green papaya, peeled and cut into 2 inch pieces
- 1 cup Asian long beans, cut into 2 inch lengths
- 1 cup green tomatoes, cut into 1 inch wedges
- 1 cup zucchini, sliced diagonally into 2 inch pieces
- 1 cup baby bok choy, sliced
- 6 cups vegetable stock
- 1 cup dried shitaake mushrooms, soaked and sliced
- 1 cup oyster mushrooms
- About 20 leaves spinach
- 1/4 cup toasted rice powder
-Thinly sliced bird's eye chilies

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