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Panang curry paste is as rich and bright in flavor as it is color. The vibrant red hue comes from a large handful of red chilis. For our recipe we are using dried Thai chilis for heat. We balance the spicy hotness of red chilis with bright notes of coriander, mace and cardamom, and the tanginess of kaffir lime rind, lemongrass and galangal. Then we add the rich, savory flavors of shrimp paste, shallots and garlic.
Making this paste at home requires time and love, but is so worth the effort, because it tastes so much better than store bought and can be used is a number of tasty dishes. You can throw everything into a food processor if you like, but the traditional way to make panang curry paste is with mortar, pestle and mashing power. For extra credit, toast the spices slightly in a dry pan to release their aromas before grinding and mashing.
Mix the following and grind into a powder using a mortar and pestle.
long green peppers
Then add the rest of the ingredients and pound for about 10 minutes until the paste is smooth.
If you do not own a mortar & pestle, a food processor/blender would also suffice.