Recipe: Thai Shrimp Curry
For this Thai dish, the spice is a hand-blended curry paste made from shallots, lemongrass, garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander, chilies, and curry powder, which, when mixed with the coconut milk, becomes a pleasantly spicy undertone with many layers of flavor.
Yellow Curry Paste
3 large cloves garlic, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 knob ginger root, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 shallot, coarsely chopped
1 stalk lemongrass, white part only, thinly sliced
2 dried red chilies, chopped or crumbled
1 jalapeno pepper, seeds removed and coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 lime, juice only
1 tablespoon nam pla (Asian fish sauce)
1 tablespoon water (more if needed)
Combine all ingredients in a blender and pulse to a fine paste. If the paste is too dry and thick to flow into the food processor blades, scrape down the sides of the bowl, add water a little at a time and continue pulsing until it reaches the right consistency to form a fine puree.
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 pound large shrimp, peeled & deveined, tails intact
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and thinly sliced
1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
3 tablespoons yellow curry paste
1 can unsweetened coconut milk
Heat peanut oil in a wok or large skillet. Sauté the shrimp and peppers until shrimp are lightly pink. Stir in the curry paste, add the coconut milk and simmer, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes, until sauce is slightly thickened. Serve with Jasmine Rice.