Saturday, November 21, 2009

Doing Thai A Bit Better This Time

It was Friday night. I had cilantro, basil, and lemongrass in the fridge. I needed a slightly more authentic Thai dish than a turkey burger. I was lucky enough to also had an internet pal post a Thai red curry recipe to the community we both post to.

I do love Thai food. I tried it for the first time in my early years of college and I become an immmediate addict. The bad part is that it took another year or two before there were any Thai restaurants locally. Once a Thai recipe opened in this area, I remember making all of my friends come with me to try this wonder known as Thai food. I am smitten with the coconut curry.

I had to modify my friend's recipe. He suggested a half a bottle of red curry paste, but I found my bottle a bit emptier. That's okay. The stuff if way spicy and there is only so much heat Sir Pickypants can tolerate. He also said to use full-fat coconut milk and cook the paste in the cream. My store only sold light, so I had to wing it a bit. He also called for Thai basil. Again, that's as hard to find as kaffir lime leaves (unless you grow it yourself) so I used a mix of regular basil and cilantro. The recipe suggests any mix of vegetables. I used a package of frozen broccoli cuts and a two chopped red pepper. I also added a touch of lemongrass. I served it over brown rice instead of white because SPP and I are both gaining weight and are trying to cut back on the white starches.

The recipe below is my version. It was pretty good.

Thai Red Curry Chicken

2 Cans coconut milk
2 Tbl Thai red curry paste
1 1/2 pounds chicken thighs, cut into pieces
2 Tbl fish sauce
2 Tbl brown sugar
2 small red bell peppers, diced
1 package frozen broccoli cuts
Juice of 1 lime
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1 Tbl chopped fresh lemongrass

Lightly salt the chicken and brown it up in a pan. Set aside.

In a pan, whisk about a quater cup of the coconut milk with the curry paste. Bring to a boil. Keep whisking for about 5 minutes until the liquid really begins to evaporate and the mixture becomes very fragrant. Take it to where you almost think it will burn.

Add the remaining coconut milk, fish sauce and brown sugar. Simmer 5 minutes. Add the vegetables and cook till just about done. Add the chicken and simmer till it's cooked through.

Remove from heat and stir in the lime juice and herbs. Serve over rice.


Bellini Valli said...

We love Thai at the L'il Burnt Toast household.

Sue said...

I like the amount of curry paste you used. I think half a bottle would have been too much. That all sounds so good.

Emily said...

Yum. I think this sounds delicious. I like that you used frozen broccoli in this. Frozen vegetables are so handy. No washing or chopping!

Donna-FFW said...

Can you believe Ive only had Thai food a handful of times. I really should just make some of my own. This sounds great..

Adam said...

I'm probably similar to Sir Picky when it comes to spicy heat tolerance. I enjoy Thai food, but I need to loose my tongue training wheels before I'm ready for the curry big leagues :)

Maria said...

I am a big thai fan! Mmmm!

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Val and Maria - Thai food really does rock. I love knowing other Thai fans.

Sue and Adam - Yeah. I definitely agree that half the bottle would have been too much. It means my red curry wasn't all that read, but it did give me the flavor I wanted without burning my esophagus.

Emily - Hear hear! Sometimes fresh is just a bit too long to prep and cook. I love frozen broccoli cuts because you can add easily to anything. I love them in my pot pies.

Donna - Get thee to a Thai restaurant and see what you're missing.

Chow and Chatter said...

oh I am with you on Thai food is is wonderful great curry can't beat a good curry

The Blonde Duck said...

I've never had Thai food, but Ben loves it. I'm going to make this and surprise him with it.

Malar Gandhi said...

Oh my gosh, that is really yumm. Love thai food, this curry looks very inviting and a must try one for me:)