Or to give it the Thai name - kaeng khiao wan gai
. Betcha didn't know I could speak Thai did you, me neither.
Although I do know enough to say things like 'Hello, Goodbye, How are you, I'm fine thank you, Yes please, No thank you, Just a little'....and also the very
useful 'Hop it, we already have whatever you're trying to sell us'.
Today's recipe is a version of one I was taught many years ago, working one to one with the cook, in this hotel restaurant on a beach in Phuket, Thailand - boy was it hot in there too:
And Len got to eat everything I made from won tons to curries, which pleased him immensely. Not surprising really as, apart from Mexican food, he could live on Thai curries.
On the same holiday I used to sit with the restaurant manageress learning to carve fruit and vegetables - anyone want a rose carved out of carrot? It's an
exceedingly useful everyday skill my party piece :)
OK, onto the recipe - named 'green' purely as the curry paste is green:
Green Chicken Curry
1 tbsp vegetable or groundnut oil
I onion, sliced
1 garlic clove, chopped finely
2-3 tbsp Green Curry Paste
400ml/14oz coconut milk
150ml/1/4 pint chicken stock
4 kaffir lime leaves - or one stem of lemon grass sliced across into four pieces
4 skinned, boned chicken breasts cut into cubes
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp Thai soy sauce
grated rind and juice of 1/2 lime
I tsp palm sugar or soft, light brown sugar
4 tbsp chopped fresh coriander, to garnish - plus a 'carved out of carrot rose' if you feel the urge :)
Heat the oil in a wok or frying pan and stir fry the onion and garlic for 1-2 minutes, until starting to soften. Add the curry paste and stir-fry for 1-2 minutes.
Fry the chicken gently until sealed in the onion, garlic and paste mix (moving it round all the time), add the coconut milk, stock and lime leaves (or lemon grass), ** bring to the boil then lower the heat and simmer gently for 15-20 minutes until the chicken is tender.
**At this point, just before the simmering stage, I always add something in the way of vegetables. In the photo above I'd added chunks of red and green pepper and also sliced baby aubergines. Often I just use baby sweetcorn, cut in half to make easier eating - or okra (Ladies Fingers) also works brilliantly. Adding the vegetables is optional though - I just like to have something as a bit of a contrast to the chicken.
Add the fish sauce, soy sauce, lime rind and juice and sugar. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until the sugar has dissolved. Serve immediately, garnished with chopped coriander.
Serve with Jasmine Rice - or plain run of the mill Patna or Basmati rice would be fine.
Things I do:
I was shown how to make Thai curry pastes from scratch but now unashamedly buy it in jars as a Thai curry paste has about a dozen ingredients in and sometimes life is too short to fiddle on for ages.
Lime leaves aren't always easy to find in the UK, and dried ones don't really work well, so I often compromise by slicing a stem of fresh lemon grass across into three or four pieces and then removing the pieces before serving the curry.
'Light' soy sauce if fine if you can't find Thai soy sauce - or just use one tablespoon of normal dark soy sauce.
Until recently I couldn't find palm sugar in the UK, but Sainsburys now stock it in their specialist foods area. Light brown sugar does work fine but there's just that something about palm sugar if you can find it.
Enjoy! Or should I say ทานให้อร่อยนะ !