Jungle curry paste (kaeng paa)

Yield: 3 servings

Measure Ingredient
\N \N Stephen Ceideburg
2 larges Shallots, minced
1 tablespoon Minced garlic (3 cloves)
1 tablespoon Peeled, minced fresh galangal or:
1 \N Two-inch long slice dried *
1 \N Inch piece fresh lemon grass, minced, or:
1 tablespoon Dried, soaked in water for 30 minutes, drained and minced
8 \N Dried whole red chilies, with seeds, minced, or:
2½ teaspoon Crushed red-pepper flakes
2 teaspoons Minced cilantro root
1 \N Fresh kaffir lime leaf, minced **
½ teaspoon Shrimp paste
½ teaspoon Salt

* soaked in hot water for 30 minutes, drained and minced, or 2 tsp.

peeled, minced ginger root ** or 2 dried, soaked in warm water for 20 minutes, drained and minced, or ½ tsp. grated lime zest The preparation of Thai curry pastes involves pounding or grinding together an array of spices and herbs. This recipe is very hot; cut down on the amount of dried red chilies if a milder curry is desired.

In a mortar or a small bowl, combine all the ingredients. Using a pestle or the back of a metal spoon, press down on the mixture and stir until it forms a paste. (The curry paste can be prepared ahead and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.) Makes 3 to 3½ Tbsp.

From "Eating Well", Jan/Feb, 1992.

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