The 15th Annual Food & Wine Classic at Aspen
Red Curry Paste
Red curry paste is a staple ingredient in the Thai kitchen, used as a base for coconut curries, sauces, stir-fries and marinades. Good-quality commercial Thai red curry can also be used in the recipes that follow.
Makes about 1/2 cup
- 12 medium dried red chilies
- 1/4 cup chopped shallots or red onion
- 1/4 cup chopped garlic
- 1 fat stalk fresh lemongrass (use 5 inches of the lower stalk, discarding the tough outer leaves), sliced
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh or frozen galangal or fresh ginger
- 2 tablespoons chopped well-washed coriander roots and/or stems
- 1 teaspoon grated kaffir lime zest, (optional)
- 1/2 tablespoon anchovy paste
- 1 teaspoon white peppercorns, toasted and ground
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted and ground
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds, toasted and grounds
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon peanut oil
1. Cut the stems off the chiles and shake out the seeds. Using scissors, cut the chilies into 1 1/2-inch lengths. Place in a bowl, cover with warm water and soak for 20 minutes. Drain well, reserving 1 tablespoon of the soaking liquid.
2. In a small food processor, combine the chilies with the reserved soaking liquid and all the remaining ingredients and puree, to a very fine paste. The paste will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks and in a freezer for up to 2 months.
Sate-Style Chicken Drumsticks with Thai Peanut Sauce
In a Southeast Asia, sate -- skewers of chicken or meat with a sweet and spicy peanut sauce -- are a favorite snack. In this easy recipe I use chicken drumsticks instead of threading the meat onto skewers.
6 appetizer servings (or part of a large buffet)
Marinade and Chicken
- 2 tablespoons Red Curry Paste
- 3/4 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk, stirred well
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 2 1/2 pounds small chicken drumsticks, rinsed well and patted dry
- Red kale or lettuce leaves, for garnish
- Thai Peanut Sauce (recipe on next page)
1. Make the marinade: In a food processor or blender, puree the Red Curry Paste with the coconut milk, soy sauce, vinegar, and sugar. Rub the chicken with salt, place in a deep bowl and pour the marinade over it, turning to coat. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight, turning occasionally.
2. Grill or broil the chicken until slightly charred and cooked through, 25 to 30 minutes. Line a serving platter with red kale leaves, place a bowl with Thai Peanut Sauce in the middle and arrange the chicken around it.
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