I made red curry paste last week. I intend to make a few batches of it before both; I exhaust my supply of fresh lemongrass and the thai basil packs it in for this year. I find you can be fairly flexible with the ingredients of curry paste. This probably isn’t particularly authentic but to me thats not as important as whether it tastes good. For instance I would prefer to make my own with fresh ingredients and potentially sacrifice a component or two, (in a ideal world this would have galangal in it), rather than buy a paste that has sat around in a jar for months.
This is what I put in this weeks paste:
Thai Red Curry Paste
- 2 tspn coriander seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 100g shallots – chopped
- 4 large cloves garlic (actually I used about 8 small ones as thats what I have left from my summer harvest) – chopped
- 5 hot chillies – chopped (or more to taste)
- 3 lemongrass stalks – chopped
- 1 tspn chopped coriander root
- 2 tsp shrimp paste
Roast the cumin and coriander seeds*, then grind. Place all ingredients including ground spices into a food processor and whizz together with a splash or two of water to make a paste.
I haven’t included ginger in this paste as I usually use this paste to make curry and I add the ginger seperately. If you are using it for something else it might be worth adding ginger into the above recipe. Galangal also works really well in this recipe, as do ground white peppercorns.
I use fresh chillies because that is what I have at the moment. Dry ones are great too – just soak in water first.
*I do this on the stove top in a dry frypan – move them around a lot and roast until they just start to change colour and smell yummy.