Thai Green Chicken Curry in all its justified glory n finding music inside the mortar n pestle with the amazing food of Thailand
If you want to make a great Thai Green Curry n not just a good one-Be Brave, make your own green curry paste, get a big deep mortar n pestle n gather kaffir lime leaves, shallots, lemon grass, coriander roots in that and start bashing them, it is going to be a long time till they surrender to you and you got to have patience in your heart n eventually you will find the music – I promise you that. Start with preparing the green curry paste with enough time in your hands like 20/25 minutes and everything will fall in place.
The morning I set out to make the green curry paste I was tested by many things- hot humid summer, patience n getting stung by a hornet! I gave myself 20 minutes for the curry paste to come into being, but if you are making it for the first time it will get stretched into 30/35. It really helps if you have a big deep mortar n pestle made out of stone or a combination of metal n wood, a small wooden or marble mortar n pestle will make things really difficult for you, every ingredient will try to jump off your mortar and it will bring the flames to life in your head, so if you don’t have the right equipment, simply transfer the whole thing to blender n blend.
The rule of making the green curry paste is that the ingredients with the least amount of water content n which are hardest in terms of texture will go first inside the mortar, e.g. The shallots will go last and the lemon grass n coriander roots will go in the beginning.
There are so many elements to Thai cooking like e.g. in the green curry itself, the process is so similar to Indian cooking, in both the cuisines there is detailed use of spice and it is not hard to see why, for many thousands of years India n Thailand are close neighbors and extensive trading across the sea took place for centuries, both the cultures influenced each other, people migrated from both the countries and it is a continuous process. I find Thai food to be amazingly aromatic, talk about fragrant Thai green curry, red curry or Thai jasmine rice.
Now you know what! When you are making either a chicken or fish or vegetable Thai green curry you can start the cooking without adding any extra oil, in traditional Thai green curries they often start with simmering the coconut milk until it thickens n specks of fat separates out from the body of the coconut milk and in the process of cooking more oil is released from it and from the chicken itself or fish, so the final dish has specks of shiny oil floating around it. However there are people who still begin with a dash of oil in the beginning, I’ll ask you to add no extra oil if you are making chicken version because the chicken fat will be another source of fat.
The kaffir lime leaves are magic, they make the air n the curry go pregnant with their amazing smell, if you have not got kaffir lime leaves, use other lime leaves, the lime leaves are sturdy , so they can withstand 20 min of simmering. A traditional Thai green curry will obviously have shrimp paste n fish sauce in them, when you don’t have both or can’t use them use a good quality soy sauce for the umami flavor, there is no good substitute I know for shrimp paste, but let me truly assure you that your green curry will still be very very good. So I think it is time to get cooking, so let’s crack it.
By the way if you get stung by a crazy hornet like I got while making the curry paste, blend and onion and rub its juice over that place and it will relieve you of the pain n swelling in great amounts in a short time.
For The Recipe: You will need
We are literally done with our great Thai green curry and time to taste. So go ahead with a spoon and let’s agree there is nothing quite like it. Serve it with hot white rice or Thai jasmine rice and the combination is to die for. Absolutely share it with family n friends and watch their faces transform ;) it’s great. Bon appétit.