Saturday, 29 December 2018

Curry makes the world go round

Here I am four days after Christmas, in elasticated waist jogging bottoms, cooking turkey curry with a pitcher of Bloody Mary on the go.Its time to regain some sense of normality while struggling with a fridge load of leftovers.Curry makes the world go round.A mark, a yen, a buck or a pound can buy us many different styles of curry from across the globe.And what shouts curry louder than anything? - Christmas left overs.Turkey, pork,vegetables,maybe lamb if you opted for an unconventional Christmas like Ottolenghi proffered.
A jar of mass produced curry paste off the supermarket shelf may well go half way to emulating the flavour you tasted in your local "punjab" "Malabar woodlands""Thai-Chi" "Chutney mary""Pok Pok"or "Sukho Thai" but won´t match the taste of a home made curry paste.
Curry pastes are easy to make from scratch.For years I have been making a Thai green Curry paste.I thought this time I would try my hand at a Thai "red" curry paste.Red curry paste makes for excellent Thai curry, including curry chicken and ​seafood curries, ​beef curry, ​vegetarian curries and fish curry. Or add a dollop of this red paste to flavour Thai soups, noodles or other dishes.Homemade curry paste makes curries way way tastier, and  the process from pestle and mortar to mouth is not a lot more time consuming, and it´s much healthier too!
Home made Thai red  curry paste
1 shallot (or 1/4 cup chopped red onion)
1 stalk fresh lemongrass, minced
1 to 2 red chilies (or 1/2 to 1 tsp. cayenne pepper, or 2 to 3 tsp. Thai chili sauce)
4 cloves garlic
1 thumb-size piece ginger, sliced)
2 tbsp. good quality tomato puree or ketchup
1 tsp. ground cumin
3/4 tsp. ground coriander
1/4 tsp. ground white pepper
2 tbsp.Nam pla,Thai fish sauce
1 tsp. shrimp paste
1 tsp. sugar
1 1/2 to 2 tbsp. piri pri flakes
2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice 
Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender and process well to create a fragrant Thai red curry paste.
To make a simple curry sauce with your curry paste
1/2 can coconut milk
1 tbsp home made peanut butter
2 tbsp home made red curry paste
3/4 tbsp nam pla ,Thai fish sauce
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp soft brown sugar
1/2 tsp minced garlic
Vegetable stock for thinning (optional)
Put coconut milk in a pan.add the peanut butter,curry paste,sugar,garlic,fish sauce.Whisk over a low heat for 15 minutes or until a desired consistency is reached. You can now add the rest of the ingredients for your selected choice of curry.

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