Friday, August 29, 2008

Thai Red Curry Chicken

In exactly a week from now I will be defending for my Masters' degree, and I think I'm almost quite done. I thought I'd just celebrate for a little by having curry and a beer - an old school Wednesday night tradition the boyfriend and I used to have back when we were first dating and less old and domesticated. When it comes to curry, I usually like making Indian-style curries that have a little bit more curry powder and that don't use coconut milk. Today though, I attempted to make a Thai-style curry to get rid of some lemongrass I had left, and to complement the remaining Sierra Nevada Summerfest Ale that's been sitting in the back of the refrigerator since damnation.

You can use store bought red curry paste, but I don't usually find those very tasty, they're always either overtly salty or taste like watered-down juice. I've included my red curry paste recipe in case you want to have the satisfaction of making your own.

Thai Red Curry Chicken
Serves 2

Red Curry Paste
2 shallots, diced
1 stalk lemongrass
2 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp garlic
1 tbsp ground coriander seeds
1 small piece galangal (turmeric) (substitute: ginger)
1 tbsp curry powder
2 red chillis (substitute: 1 dried red chilli)
1/2 tsp turmeric
4 cloves garlic
1 tsp shrimp paste
1 piece kaffir lime leaves
2 tsp brown sugar
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 tsp salt

6 oz chicken breast, cut into 1 inch cubes
Juice of 1/2 a lime
1/2 cup Thai holy basil (substitute: 1/2 cup sweet basil)
1/2 cup sliced red and yellow peppers
1 cup chicken broth
2 tbsp coconut milk

Process all ingredients for the curry paste in a blender or food processor. The paste will be runny due to the coconut milk.

Heat 1/2 tbsp oil in a skillet. Put in the curry paste and let it bubble, stirring for about 1 minute. Add in chicken broth, bring to a boil and in the chicken pieces.

Bring heat down to a simmer and gently let the chicken cook through, for about 7 - 8 minutes. Add in the red peppers and simmer for another 5 minutes. Turn off the heat, add in basil leaves and lime juice and stir gently until the basil leaves are wilted.

Spoon into serving dish and drizzle with coconut milk.

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