This is one of Emeril Lagasse's recipes. The Thai red curry paste gives this dish heat, so if you prefer less heat or more heat, adjust accordingly. The recipe for Thai red curry paste is below but I bought a jar in the supermarket to make the dish even more simple. I doubled the recipe for company we had tonight. Served this with Jasmine rice and stir-fried Asian style green beans.
2 tablespoons peanut oil
1/2 cup chopped shallots
1 large red bell pepper, cut into strips
2 medium carrots, trimmed and shredded
2 teaspoons minced garlic
3 tablespoons Thai Red Curry Paste*, recipe follows
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 teaspoons palm sugar or light brown sugar
1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
3 tablespoons chopped Thai basil leaves
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Cooked jasmine rice, accompaniment
Sprigs fresh cilantro, garnish
In a large wok or saute pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallots, bell peppers, carrots, and garlic, and stir-fry until soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the curry paste and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Stirring, add the fish sauce and sugar, then the coconut milk and bring to a boil. Simmer until thickened slightly, about 2 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook, stirring, until pink and just cooked through, about 2 minutes.
Remove from the heat and stir in the basil and cilantro.
Serve over jasmine rice, garnished with cilantro sprigs.
Thai Red Curry Paste
12 dry Thai chili peppers or other small red peppers, seeded and soaked in warm water 30 minutes
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 cup chopped shallots
1/4 cup chopped garlic
3 stalks lemon grass, tough outer leaves and tops removed, tender stalks minced
3 tablespoons peeled and chopped fresh ginger root, or galanga
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro stems
2 teaspoons chopped lime zest, preferably Kaffir lime
1 teaspoon shrimp paste
In a skillet, dry roast the coriander and peppercorns over low heat until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Remove and let cool. Grind in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle.
Return the pan to medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, until starting to brown, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
Drain the chiles, reserving the liquid, and roughly chop.
In a blender or food processor, combine all the ingredients with about 1/4 cup of the reserved soaking liquid. Process to make a smooth paste, scraping down the sides several times and adding more liquid through the top 1 tablespoon at a time with the motor running.
Transfer to an airtight container and keep refrigerated until ready to use. Paste will keep refrigerated for up to 1 month.