Sunday, April 27, 2008

Malaysian Curry & Thai Green Curry Chicken

This post has been in the making for over a week now. But nothing but the best for Rosie and Pixie's Putting Up Event.

When I first read about this event, I thought, "ok, I'll just sit this one out". I have never made any sort of preserve in my life. I don't have any tools and I don't have storage. But, Pixie takes no prisoners. My small kitchen was no excuse. So the pressure was on. When I told Giz that I was going to be trying Kittie's from Kittens in the Kitchen Malaysian Rempah paste, she said, "Perfect - submit it for Putting It Up. So, if this paste is bending the boundaries of Putting It Up, blame Giz. In fact, I'll just go ahead and say that any mistakes I make are Giz's fault. Nothing like making sure someone else takes responsibility for my actions.

Back to the Malaysian paste...You'll recall that I recently tried, unfulfillingly, to simulate the delicious flavours of Thai food that I've eaten while out for dinner. In fact, here are some pictures from my last visit to Giz's, about a month ago (yes, I gave in and visited), when we went out for Thai food:

Since the store-bought curry is not even close to food I've eaten while out for dinner, I figured, I would need to make something from scratch. When I saw Kittie's recipe, I thought it was a perfect first attempt recipe. Sure, it's Malaysian, but I think the flavours/ingredients are quite similar to what you would find in Thai food (please clarify this for me if I'm wrong).

Purchasing the ingredients for this post was a bit of an adventure in itself. R and I headed out for Chinatown and visited a Thai grocery store. I asked a guy to help me find all of the ingredients. He could have shown me fish heads and I would have believed him. I was suprised at how available most of the ingredients were and that they were reasonably priced. Between $1 - $2/item.

What follows is a video of me making the paste. NOTES: no, I do not sound like a 12 year old dink in person....just on video.

Malaysian Rempah Paste

2 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp fennel seeds
1” cinnamon stick
2 tbsp peanuts, ground to a paste
1” piece galangal – peeled, roughly chopped
2” piece fresh ginger – peeled, roughly chopped
2 small pieces fresh turmeric (or 1 tsp ground) – peeled (careful, will turn your hands yellow for several me on this)
4 garlic cloves – peeled
9 Thai shallots – peeled, roughly chopped
6 Thai red chillies – stalks removed, seeds in
2 4” lemongrass sticks – inc bulb
The zest of 1 lime
1 tsp shrimp paste
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp groundnut oil (used canola instead)
2 tbsp finely grated coconut

In a dry pan, toast coriander, fennel, cumin seeds and cinnamon until they start to release their aromas. Grind in a mortar and pestle.

Take all the fresh ingredients and grind to a smooth paste.

Mix all of the fresh ingredients with the ground spices and sauces. The paste will keep in the fridge for up to two months – store in a glass jar, with a layer of oil to prevent oxidization.

Also, thanks to Kittie's advice and great use of the paste, I also found inspiration from her Thai Green Curry with Chicken.

4 bnls skls chicken breasts, diced
1 red pepper
1/2 courgette (zucchini)
1/2 aubergine (eggplant)
3 lime leaves, shredded (didn't have)
1 clove garlic, crushed
1" piece ginger, grated
3 tbsp curry paste
1 400ml tin coconut milk, or two small ones
Oil to fry
Thai basil leaves

Heat oil in a hot wok, add 2 tablespoons of curry paste and fry for about 30 seconds. Add a few tablespoons of coconut milk. Add the chicken and fry until opaque. At this point add the ginger, garlic, lime leaves, and the remaining paste. Fry for another couple of minutes.

Stir in the remaining coconut milk and the red peppers, then turn to a simmer. Allow to simmer uncovered for about 6 minutes - until the peppers are slightly softened, but still have a good 'bite'.

Add the aubergine and courgette, simmer for another couple of minutes and serve over steamed rice. I didn't use aubergine (eggplant). Instead, I added a variety of peppers. I also added extra Thai red chillis - but didn't eat them because they were too spicy. In fact, I had residual stinging from holding the chillis.

Overall, both the paste and chicken are very good. It doesn't taste like the Thai food I eat in restaurants, so that seach continues. But, this paste is a good addition. I have about 3/4 of a jar remaining, so I'm looking forward to trying other variations. One note, is that I would probably add more vegetables next time and cut the chicken pieces smaller. It also needed a touch of salt/sweetness. I added soy sauce and that did the trick. StumbleUpon


Pixie said...

lol That has to be the most entertaining food video I've yet or shall ever come across again.

unless, you can top your own video?

Thanks 'sis' for taking part, regardless of having a tiny kitchen. A wonderful paste as well to offer to the event!

RecipeGirl said...

Wow, I'm impressed. You are definitely quite adventurous making this one!! Great job :)

kittie said...

ha ha - love the video - thanks for trying my recipe and posting it!

Peter M said...

Psych, great post,right down to the video and the resulting great dish from Kittie. Yeah to Psychgrad and yay to Kittie!

PS. You sound closer to 16! lol

Núria said...

Clap, clap clap!!!! I love your video :D You've got such a nice sweet voice!

Great post, Psychgrad!

Katie said...

YUM! I've been dying to make Green Curry CHicken for a while now. This is totally pushing me over the edge. Yum!

Elle said...

Wow, great job!! I'm totally impressed and I love your video!

The chicken curry looks divine...can you send me some for breakfast?


Psychgrad said...

pixie - wow - the most entertaining food video. That's quite the feat. I'm not sure if I can top that but the next time the mood strikes, I'll definitely attempt it.

recipegirl - I have my adventurous moments.

kittie - thanks for the great recipes!

peter -'re treading on thin ice man.

nuria - thanks nuria

katie - I'd be interested in your opinion on it.

elle - breakfast? Can't say I recommend this as a breakfast food. But, to each his/her own.

Ben said...

I have been using the same excuses not to enter Pixie's event. But I think now I don't have any! Hehehe. Great post I will try to squeeze this recipe in the menu for next week.


Rosie said...

WOW how impressive is this!!

Thanks for taking part in the event wonderful entry :)

That Girl said...

Ditto Rosie - SO IMPRESSIVE!

Bellini Valli said...

I agree with everyone else. The flavours are very complex here, what a great entry into the Putting Up event:D

giz said...

Psychgrad - so I'm really curious -when it turns out not to be a mistake but rather a good idea - do I actually get the accalaides for having a brain or does that automatically go to you and I just get the blame for the mistakes?

canarygirl said...

I love love LOVE the video! You totally do not sound like a dink, silly girl! Delicious looking recipe, too...I don't think I've ever seen fresh tumeric in my asian market...I wonder where I could find that.

nicisme said...

Great video, loved the part about the clearing up! Can't wait to see some more.

Lori said...

YOU DO NOT SOUND LIKE A DINK. You sound very sweet.

Thank you for your post on my site, it was very nice.

Your paste looks really good. I have been wanting to try this particular type of paste for a while. There is actually an opened jar sitting in my pantry. I did not make it however. Great job on your video and I am so not volunteering for clean up!

Lori said...

unopened, I mean. oops

noble pig said...

You are an adventurous cook! Looks wonderful.

Vicarious Foodie said...

I really like your video! I bet this is great. Those 6 Thai chiles scare me a bit, but I'm a big wuss.

Psychgrad said...

Ben - if I have to do do you. :) Not that it wasn't a joy.

Rosie - I'm just glad this was an acceptable submission.

that girl - cheers. What's with the new name?

BV - thanks. The flavours are kind of complex so it's hard to know what changes I would make the the paste itself.

giz - we could work something out. You can take partial credit for 1/4 of my successes. Unless you want to pull the "gene" card. In which case, you can claim partial credit on all successes.

canarygirl - I found them in a bag next to other produce. There were about 4-5 fresh pieces/bag.

nicisme - I do want to make more videos.

lori - what's this sweet business? That's the 2nd or 3rd sweet I've gotten. As in, you wouldn't worry if you heard my voice in a dark alley?

Noble pig - thanks.

vicarious foodie - I do like spicy food. In fact, I added extra chillis during the cooking but realized eating them would be a bad idea. It's actually not that spicy. But, I may have killed my taste buds by eating too much spicy food.

Kevin said...

That curry paste sounds really tasty! Great video! That last time that I made a curry paste I could not find the galangal. I will have to head down to Chinatown to look for it.

Emiline said...

It's you! You're real!

The curry sounds wonderful. I can't tell you how much I enjoy it.

Still thinking about this event. Not sure what I'll do.

Ann said...

Ooh... I definitely need to try that!

Jessy and her dog Winnie said...

Looks delicious, great job!

Pixie said...

Just wanted to say thanks again for such a great entry and to let you know the round up is now up.