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Ethnic Foods Forum Includes Mexican, Japanese, Thai, etc.

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Old 02-20-2017, 02:17 PM
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Default Thai Curry Paste

We really like Thai curries. I tried some of the jarred stuff and wasn't happy with them. Now I make my own.

Thai Red Curry Paste

Ingredients
3 oz dried New Mexico chilis
12 small hot chilis, such as arbol or Thai bird
1 Tbsp whole corriander seed
1-1/2 Tbsp shrimp paste (available @ oriental markets) This gets double wrapped in foil, about a 2" square package.
3/4 C chopped shallots or red onion
1/2 C whole, peeled garlic cloves
1/2 Tbsp minced, fresh Kaffir lime peel or persian lime peel. I usually substitute key lime zest.
2 large stalks lemon grass, outer leaves discarded, using about the first 3" from the root end only. Cut into thin rounds.
!/2 C finely chopped, peeled fresh galanga or fresh ginger. I use frozen galanga.

Bring a small sauce pan of water to a boil. Stem and seed chilis. Cut in 1/2 lengthwise and remove as many veins as possible. Cut halves into 3/4" strips crosswise and reserve. Stem and shake out most of the seeds from the hot chilis or leave them if you really like spicy Thai. Cut the hot chilis into small pieces. When water comes to a boil, remove from heat, add all the chilis and let rehydrate for 30 minutes.
In a small skillet toast the corriander seeds until fragrent, making sure to shake the pan to prevent burning. Transfer seeds to a small bowl to cool. Place the skillet back over medium heat and add the packet of shrimp paste, cook for about 5 minutes, until fragrent, turning packet several times. Set asided to cool. Place the skillet back over medium heat, add the shallots and garlic. Dry fry until soft and slightly browned, anout 5 minutes. In a spice grinder, process the corriander seeds to a powder and transfer to a blender or food processer (metal blade). Add the lemon grass, lime zest, galanga, shallots and garlic to the blender. Add the cooled shrimp paste. Drain the chilis, keeping 1/2 cup of the liquid. Add chilis to the blender. Blend/process ingredients until a thick, smooth paste is formed. You will have to pause to scrape down the sides. You can add a couple Tbsp of soaking liquid to assist in the processing if it appears too thick. This recipe will give you about 1-1/2 cups. It will last about 1 month in an air tight container in the fridge or 3 months in the freezer.


Thai Yellow Curry Paste

Ingredients
3 oz package California or New Mexico chilis, stems, seeds and vains removed
1 Tbsp whole coriander seeds, toasted and cooled
1 Tbsp whole cumin seeds, toasted and cooled
1-1/2 Tbsp shrimp paste
3 Tbsp curry powder
2 Tbsp ground tumeric
2 stalks lemon grass, tough outer leaves removed and thinly sliced
2 Tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
2 Tbsp chopped garlic
1/3 Cup chopped shallots or red onion

Directions
Cut the chilis crosswise into 3/4" strips, place them in a bowl and cover with hot water. You can heat the water on the stove top or in the micro wave.
Set aside and let soak until needed. You may have to put a plate on top to keep them submerged. Heat a small skillet to medium high (I use the same one I toasted the seeds in). Meanwhile double wrap the shrimp paste in foil, about a 2" square. Add the shrimp paste packet to the skillet and cook, turning once or twice, until aromatic, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside to cool. Put the toasted seeds, curry powder and tumeric in a spice grinder and grind to a powder. Blitz the lemon grass, ginger, garlic and shallots in a food processer with metal blade. Unwrap shrimp paste and add to processor along with the spice powder. Drain the chilis, reserving about 1/2 cup of the soaking liquid and add them tp the processor. Process the ingredients until a smooth, moist paste is formed, scrapping the sides down occasionally. You may have to add some of the soaking liquid to help with the grinding. Strian paste through a fine mesh strainer. You can refrigerate for a couple days or freeze for a couple months. This should yield about 1 cup, the amount usually called for in a yellow curry recipe.


Some ingredients have changed from frozen to fresh as we now grow galangal and have a kaffir lime tree.
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