Thursday, 22 October 2020

Prawns - Thick Curry Sauce

Prawns in a thick curry sauce.

Panang Phanang Phanaeng Curry.

There are as many types of curries as the clouds in our skies. Versions of a curry originating from the geography gives it their names.

Panang curry is also called Phanang and Phanaeng. It is a thick curry prepared from the basic red curry paste and added layers of flavour. Primarily  it must be  sweet and salty while having a bold nutty flavour with the addition of toasted, roasted peanuts - or peanut butter. Generally from the central and southern regions of Thailand it is delicious. Served with boiled rice or even a roti, paratha it can be a soul warming comfort food. 

Not to be confused with Penang in Malaysia or their cuisine.






This curry is meant to be thick.

Serves 6

Grind together

10 dry red chillies
2 to 6 fresh birds eye or red chillies - spice heat can be intense
4 shallots - ground to a pulp
6 cloves of garlic
1 thumb size galangal, grated or a paste
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp palm sugar
4 white hearts of the lemon grass 
1 tsp fish sauce
Zest of 1 makrut lime 
Juice of the lime
2 tbsp finely crushed peanuts or fresh peanut butter
400 ml thick coconut cream
3 cardamom pods
Handful of Thai Basil leaves

Optionally add either 
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp white pepper



Marinate 
2 lb prawns - keep the shells aside.
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp turmeric

Oil to cook in. 

Heat a little oil and pan fry the prawns on a high flame just flash frying them. Remove and keep aside. In the same pan add the shallots saute until golden brown and add the ground chillie and rest of the spices. Keep stirring until all the aromas are fragrant. Add water as needed(coconut water or coconut milk can be substituted). Add the peanuts, cardamom, lime juice and mix well.
Add the coconut cream and bring to a boil, until required thickness. Reduce the heat to a simmer, add the prawns and let it simmer for 5 to 7 minutes.  
Add the fresh basil and give it a toss. Serve immediately. 


Photo credit Niloufer Mavalvala


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