Archive for the ‘ Curry ’ Category

PHRIK KHING CURRY PASTE

Every once in a while I’ll spend a Sunday afternoon making some Thai curry paste. Like I mentioned in my recipe for panang curry paste, a quick trip to the Asian market for a few hard to find ingredients and about an hour in the kitchen with your mortar and pestle will set you up for a good month of authentic Thai cooking at home.

As far as I’m concerned, this stuff is money in the bank.  It keeps for a  up to a month in the fridge and is perfect for pulling together a bona fide Thai meal in minutes.  Stir-fry the paste, some meat and a few handfuls of seasonal vegetables in your favorite wok, add in some stock, palm sugar, fish sauce and Thai basil, throw it all on top of some sticky rice and you’ll be set up for some truly delicious eating.

Unlike a red, green or yellow curry, phrik khing is considered a “dry-style” curry, free of any coconut milk.  Instead, the paste is fried in oil and moistened with a bit of stock to create a sauce that clings to the protein and veggies.  The resulting dish can be characterized as smooth and a bit peppery with fragrant notes of galangal and lemongrass throughout.

So, next time you’re looking for something to cook on a lazy Sunday afternoon, consider making some homemade curry paste and look forward to reaping the rich culinary dividends of delicious Thai meals in the weeks that follow.

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PANANG BEEF CURRY

Panang Beef Curry

Ah, the good ol’ days: when spending 30 bucks on Thai takeout was just your typical Wednesday night. Now, income-less, Thai food along with Chinese and pizza seems like quite the luxury. These days I’m making my own Thai food, and to be honest, not missing a thing.  At home, I make Thai food the way I like it.  Very spicy, fairly salty and just a little sweet. Such is the beauty of having curry pastes sitting in your freezer ready at your disposal.  What seems like an exotic and esoteric cuisine on the surface is actually fairly simple to prepare at home.

I like to think of panang as a great beginner curry for those that are new to Thai cuisine.  Reminiscent of everybody’s favorite peanut dipping sauce which accompanies the ubiquitous satay, panang is at once both bright and aromatic while at the same time, rich and comforting.

I’m lucky enough to live in San Francisco where I can find pretty much anything I need at any of the many Asian markets.  However, if you love Thai food and can’t find a store that stocks such items as palm sugar, lime leaves, or good Thai coconut milk, check out www.importfood.com for everything you need (and then some).

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