*  Exported from  MasterCook  *
 Recipe By     : 
 Serving Size  : 2    Preparation Time :0:00
 Categories    : Thai                             Condiments
   Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
 --------  ------------  --------------------------------
    1       c            Prik ki nu
                         (green birdseye chilis)
    5       tb           Lemon grass,
                         Finely sliced
   10       tb           Shallots (purple onions),
   10       tb           Garlic, minced
    5       tb           Galangal (kha) grated
    5       tb           Coriander/cilantro root,
    2       tb           Coriander seed
    1       tb           Cumin seed
    1       tb           Freshly ground
                         Black pepper
    2       tb           Shredded bai makroot
                         (lime leaves)
    4       tb           Kapi (fermented shrimp
    1       tb           Palm sugar.
   This is a paste for a green curry, and the 'wan'
   indicates that it should be slightly sweet as well as
   hot. If you can't get prik ki nu, you can use half a
   pound of habanero chilis or one pound of jalapena
   chilis. If you use the latter deseed them before use.
   Note that if you use a substitute you will get a
   different volume of paste, and that you will need to
   use different amounts in subsequent recipes.
   If you can't get kha use ginger if you can't get bai
   makroot use lime zest if you can't get coriander root,
   use coriander leaves.
   coarsely chop the chilis.
   Toast the dry seeds in a heavy iron skillet or wok,
   and grind them coarsely.
   Add all the ingredients to a food processor and
   process to a smooth paste.
   Place in tightly stoppered jars, and keep in the
   fridge for at least a week for the flavors to combine
   and develop before use. The remaining three pastes are
   all made from dried red chilis: those sold in Thailand
   are frankly stale. Those sold in Europe and America
   are generally barely fit for human consumption. If you
   must use them then break them up and shake out the
   seeds, and soak them in tepid water for about 30
   minutes before use. Preferably dry fresh red chilis.
   All these recipes call for one cup of fresh red
   chilis, or half a pound of red habaneros, or one pound
   of red jalapenas, deseeded. Dry them in the sun, or if
   the climate doesn't allow then dry them in a herb
   desicator, or smoke them in a smoker or over a
   barbeque. The dried chilis (which need not be tinder
   dry - it is enough to remove most of the water) are
   then toasted under a broiler until *almost* burnt.
   Treat this stage with extreme caution: if you overcook
   them a noxious gas closely related to Mustard gas is
   released. This is quite dangerous at a minimum cook
   them in a very well ventillated room with a fan on and
   have a damp cloth ready to cover your mouth and nose
   in case of emergencies -- and disconnect your smoke
   detector/fire alarm! Thai 'curries' are typically made
   using a 'curry' paste. However that is an
   oversimplification: firstly the word used for these
   dishes in Thai is kaeng (pronounced 'gang') and it
   covers soups, stews and of course curries. A paste
   which is used could be used just as well for a soup as
   for a curry. Secondly of course it is not true that
   Thais call them curry: the word for curry is kari and
   it is only applied to a small number of dishes: the
   dishes that appear on western Thai restaurant menues
   as 'curries' are kaengs, and they are made not with
   curry paste but with a sauce made from prik kaeng
   (which in this case could be translated better as
   chili paste). There are many different prik kaeng in
   Thai cuisine and from them you could make a vast
   number of different dishes by using different protein
   ingredients, and vegetable ingredients and so on to
   the extent that it is said that most Thai housewives
   could cook a different kaeng every day of the year.
   However if you know the four basic pastes listed here,
   and the basic techniques from my next posting, you can
   make a vast array of dishes, if not perhaps quite one
   per day for a year. A rough rule of thumb is that one
   cup of raw chilis yields a cup or so of paste (since
   there is air in the chilis). Further it will keep
   about 3 months in a preserving jar in the fridge.
   Since the average kaeng will require (depending on how
   hot you make it) between 2 and 8 tablespoons of paste,
   and since there are roughly 16 tablespoons in a cup,
   you can scale this recipe up to suit your needs.
   Suffice it to say that we make these pastes on a cycle
   over 8 weeks and make 6-8 portions of each of them. As
   they say in US motor advertisements: your mileage may
   Colonel Ian F. Khuntilanont-Philpott
   Systems Engineering, Vongchavalitkul University, Korat
   30000, Thailand
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