Monday, February 1, 2010

Thai Green Chicken Curry

The hardest thing about cooking Thai food at home is getting the right ingredients. Although I can usually find lemongrass at a local specialty store, there’s no grocery within an hour of my home that carries galangal (Asian ginger) or kaffir lime leaves. Fortunately, many supermarkets do carry Thai Kitchen green curry paste, a handy product that blends all of the hard-to-get ingredients together so you don’t have to. It even keeps well in the refrigerator.

(serves two adults and two children)

1 lb boneless chicken thighs
2 c snap peas
1 large red bell pepper
2 large shallots
1 bunch basil
1 Tbs peanut oil
3 Tbs green curry paste
1 14-oz can coconut milk
1 Tbs brown sugar
juice of a lime
2 Tbs fish sauce

1. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces about an inch or so long.

2. Trim the peas, removing the strings (if necessary) and cutting the larger ones in half on the diagonal. Slice the red pepper into thin two-inch strips. Peel and slice the shallots thinly. Strip the basil leaves and slice into strips or tear into pieces.

3. In a wok (or a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan), heat the peanut oil over a medium-high flame until very hot. Add the curry pate and stir-fry until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

4. Remove the wok from the heat. Add the chicken, red pepper, shallots, coconut milk, brown sugar, and one cup of water. Stir to combine.

5. Return the wok to the heat. Bring the curry to a simmer, Reduce the heat to medium, cover, and cook until the chicken is done, about 8-10 minutes. After 4-5 minutes of simmering, add the peas.

6. When the chicken is done, stir in the basil, lime juice, and fish sauce. Let the curry rest off the heat for 5 minutes. Serve over rice.

• The only difference between green chicken curry and red chicken curry is the curry paste. Red curry paste is a little spicier, however, so you might want to use a little less.

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