Soya Paste for Curries
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Posted by Gamini

On average half hour is spent daily in a Sri Lankan kitchen to grate and extract coconut milk and the follow up cleaning. Soya bean paste made using the following method can be used to replace coconut milk with some health benefits and saving time in the kitchen.

50 grams (1/2 cup) dry Soya bean seeds
250 ml water (three cups) to extract and more water to soak the Soya bean.
3 teaspoons salt.
15-20 ml lime juice.

Soak the Soya bean seeds overnight. Wash and transfer to a blender. Add 500 ml of water. Blend until smooth. Transfer the content to a microwavable container and microwave until the mixture comes to a boil. Reduce the power of the microwave to 3/10 th and continue heating for another 10 minutes. Make sure the content does not spill as this turns to a thick slurry during the process. Alternatively, a double boiler can be used. Heating directly over the stove top will char the bottom and discolor the product.
After 10 minutes of heating, add the lime juice and leave for 15 minutes. (During heating the inhibitory proteins become deactivated. Adding lime juice curdles the milk portion of the mixture).
After about 15 minutes transfer the content back to the blender, add salt, 250 ml of water and blend until smooth. (During this process, the curdled milk is blended back with the mixture which will result in a smooth gravy. Salt prevents or slows down the spoilage while in storage).
Transfer the paste to a non corrosive container, cover and refrigerate. This can be kept for up to 10 days.
Use up to 1:4 dilution for thin gravy (for kiri hodi, potato gravy and similar) and directly for thick gravy and as a meat gravy thickener. Use your discretion.
Note: Curdling can be achieved by adding vinegar. Lime juice is preferred as lime juice is used in many dishes where as vinegar is not.

(This recipe can be doubled. All volumes are approximate)

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