Green Curry is a popular curry in Thai Cuisine. The main ingredients used in Green Curry Paste are Green Chillies, Shallots, Garlic, Galangal, Kaffir Lime, Cilantro Roots, Shrimp Paste and Lemon Grass. Green Curry Pastes can be made ahead and frozen for later use. This paste is readily available in Asian supermarkets. Kaffir Lime rinds, Lemongrass, Basil Leaves and Galangal are used in many Thai Recipes. I was inspired by Thai Green Curry in Madhur Jaffrey’s book and decided to make Shrimp Green Curry with whatever ingredients I had with me. I adapted the Curry using few South Indian ingredients.
This Curry goes perfectly with Rice and Rotis. It has a perfect balance of sweet, sour, spicy & salty taste.
Ingredients for Green Curry Paste
- Indian Green Chillies – 4 or 5 (Alter according to your spice tolerance)
- Garlic – 3 cloves
- Chopped Shallots – 1/2 cup
- Fresh Galangal/Ginger – 3 thin slices
- Fresh Kaffir Lime Rind – 1 thin slice (I used Lemon rind/zest)
- Cilantro Leaves (Separated from a small bunch) – 1/4 cup
- Black Pepper – 1/2 tsp
- Shrimp Paste – 1/2 tsp
- Cumin Powder – 1/4 tsp
- Coriander Powder – 1/2 tsp
- Fresh Lemongrass (thinly sliced) – 2 tbsp ( I skipped this)
- Water – as needed
- Raw Shrimp (Peeled & Deveined) – 1 lb
- Diced Green Bell Pepper (Capsicum) – 1 big (optional)
- Thick Coconut Cream – 4 tbsp (I used the Cream accumulated at the top of Canned Coconut Milk)
- Coconut Milk – 3/4 cup
- Fish Sauce – 1.5 to 2 tbsp
- Tamarind Paste – 1 to 2 tsp
- Brown Sugar – 1 to 2 tsp
- Julienned Lemon rind – 1 tsp
- Oil – 2 tbsp
- Basil Leaves – 15 to 20 (I substituted this with a sprig of Curry Leaves)
- Fresh Kaffir Lime Leaves – 2 ( I skipped this)
- Salt – to taste
- Water – as needed
- Blend all the ingredients for the Green Paste with a few tablespoons of water to make a smooth paste. Keep it aside.
- Heat 2 tbsp oil in a large pan. Add the green curry paste and stir fry for a few minutes.
- Throw in the curry leaves and saute for 2 minutes.
- Add 4 tbsp of Coconut Cream and stir fry until the paste is lightly browned.
- Reduce heat to low and add fish sauce, tamarind paste, brown sugar, lemon rind and 1/2 to 3/4 cup of water.
- Stir and bring to a simmer for 5 minutes. Add the coconut milk and taste for a balance of flavors. Add salt only if needed since the fish sauce is salty.
- Stir in the shrimp and cook on medium-low heat for around 20 minutes until it is soft and cooked through (In Kerala Cuisine, Shrimp is cooked for a longer time compared to other Cuisines).
- Alternatively, if you prefer, you can cook the shrimp gently for 3-5 minutes until the shrimp just turns opaque.
- If using kaffir lime leaves, tear it up and scatter these and the basil leaves over the top of the shrimp before serving.