Panang Beef Curry

This Thai classic is a deliciously flavour filled curry. It’s a milder curry than say a red or green but it’s full of fragrance that fills the house. It’s one of my favourite curries from Thailand. I do like spice so I often pump up the heat factor by adding a handful of chopped fresh chillies when I serve. For this one I left that stage out as it’s perfectly spiced without. I’m just as sadist.

INGREDIENTS:
To make the paste:
1 dried red chilli
1 lemon grass stalk (white only – chopped)
1.5cm piece of galangal (chopped)
3 garlic cloves (chopped)
2 shallots (peeled and chopped)
3 coriander roots and stems (chopped)
1/2 teaspoon shrimp paste
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons unsalted peanuts

Other ingredients:
2 tablespoons peanut oil
700g beef rump steak (trimmed of fat and cut into thin strips)
1 cup French beans (sliced into 4cm pieces)
200ml coconut milk
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon palm sugar (or normal sugar)
3 tablespoons tamarind pulp (diluted with 6 tablespoons water)
Fresh coriander leaves (for garnish)

DIRECTIONS:
To make the paste, grind everything together in a pestle and mortar until you have a smooth paste. This should take about 20 minutes. Set aside.

Heat the oil over a moderate heat until hot. Add the spice paste and fry for 5 minutes. Add the meat and stir fry for 3-4 minutes. Add the beans then pour in the coconut milk, fish sauce, sugar and tamarind and bring to a simmer. Cook for 5 minutes, turn off the heat. Check for seasoning and serve.

SERVING:
Sprinkle over the fresh coriander and serve with lots of fluffy Jasmine rice.

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