- 5-¼ tsps fresh or frozen galanga, thinly sliced and firmly packed, or 3-4 pieces dried
- 6 to 8 pieces dried kaffir lime rind
- 22 to 30 dried red chile peppers, 2-3" long, or dried cayenne peppers
- 1 dried New Mexico chile pepper, stem removed
- ¼ tsp cumin seed
- ½ tsp coriander seed
- ¼ tsp black peppercorns
- 5-½ tsps thinly sliced fresh lemon grass, firmly packed
- ½ cup thinly sliced garlic, firmly packed
- 3 tbsps thinly sliced shallots, firmly packed
- ½ tsp shrimp paste
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ cup water, (optional - only if processing in a blender)
This curry paste is used to make Red Curry Chicken. The paste itself is very hot and pungent, but cooking it in coconut milk tones it down. The paste can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 weeks or in the freezer for 3 months.
1. If dried galanga is used, soak it for 1-2 hours in hot water. Drain and thinly slice. Reserve 1 tbsp, firmly packed.
2. Soak the Kaffir lime rind for 1-2 hours in hot water. Scrape off and discard the white pulp that lines it. Slice thinly and reserved 1 tsp, firmly packed.
3. Soak the chili peppers in warm water for about 15 minutes, until soft. Remove and discard the seeds and set the chiles aside.
4. Dry-roast the cumin seeds, coriander seeds, and black peppercorns in a skillet over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes, until you begin to smell them. Flip frequently to prevent burning. Place in a spice grinder or mortar and grind or pound to a powder. Set aside.
5. Place the galanga, Kaffir lime rind, chile peppers, powdered spices, lemon grass, garlic, shallots, shrimp paste, and salt in a mortar or blender. Pound or grind the ingredients to a fine, smooth paste. (If using a blender, add the water to process.)