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Night + Market All-Purpose Curry Paste

To prep the lemongrass, you're going to want to use the tender, white part at the bottom third of each stalk. Peel back the dry, outer layers until you reach the heart. It not necessay to peel the galangal unless it's extra rough with thick peel, usually its thin enough to skip peeling. Suggested chiles: California, New Mexico, or Ancho - or a mix. You can add an arbol or two to bump the heat a bit. If you can't get lime leaves, substitute grated zest of two limes (or key lime zest). Makrut lime leaves are also, sometimes still labelled kaffir lime leaves.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced lemongrass
  • 1/4 cup roughly sliced galangal
  • 10 large dried chiles (I used 5 California + 5 new Mexico chiles)
  • 4 makrut lime leaves, deveined and julienned
  • 1/2 cup roughly sliced shallots, peeled
  • 3/4 cup garlic, peeled but kept whole
  • small splash of (thin) soy sauce, to taste
  • 1/3 cup sunflower oil (or prefered veg. oil)

Instructions

  1. In a food processor or blender, process the ingredients in the following order, one at a time, sprinkling with a bit of salt to help break them up: lemongrass, galangal, chiles, lime leaves, shallots, garlic, and soy sauce. Blend until each ingredient is totally incorporated before adding the next, stopping as needed to scrape down sides with a spatula. You should end up with a thick, semi-dry paste.

  2. In a wok or skillet, heat the oil over medium-low heat until shimmering. Stir in the curry paste and cook until the oil is combined and the mixture is very fragrant, 5 to 10 minutes. Kris notes that this step, "helps the paste keep longer and become more hom (the Thai word for the savory fragrant aroma that happens when you toast/roast something)." 

  3. Allow the paste to cool completely before transferring to an airtight container. The paste will keep in the refrigerator for 3 weeks, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Serves 30

Notes

This is the vegan version of the A.P.C.P. - All-Purpose Curry Paste from Kris Yenbamroong's Night + Market Cookbook (Clarkson Potter, 2017)