This stew is also good with rice; try jasmine-scented basmati. Or cook up some finely diced potatoes as a stew-y companion. A "tropical" fruit medley goes well.
2 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
1 cup thinly sliced leeks (1 medium)
1 cup thinly sliced scallions, white and green parts (1/2 to 2/3 of a bunch)
4 teaspoon minced, peeled fresh gingerroot
1 1/2 teaspoons minced, seeded serrano chiles
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 1/2 cups each, canned vegetable broth and water
2 1/4 cups diced (peeled) butternut squash (a little over a pound)
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
1 (14-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk ("light" is fine)
1 package (about 12 ounces) firm tofu, drained, cut into half-inch cubes
4 teaspoons fresh lime juice
5 to 6 cups cooked rice, for serving
1/2 cup finely chopped unsalted dry-roasted peanuts, for serving
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro, garnish
In heavy pot, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high. Add leeks and scallions and saute 3 minutes. Add ginger, serrano chile and garlic and saute 1 minute. Stir in soy sauce, curry powder and sugar. Add vegetable broth and water, diced butternut squash, salt (if using) and coconut milk. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes, uncovered.
For the tofu, heat remaining peanut oil in large non-stick skillet, over medium-high heat. Add tofu and saute 10 minutes, until golden brown. When stew has simmered 15 minutes, add tofu and lime juice to stew, and remove from heat to large serving bowl. Sprinkle with peanuts and cilantro. Serve over rice. Makes 5 to 6 servings.