Sunday, 21 September 2014

Nuts About Curry!

Curry di Maiale "Penang" con Patate & Arachidi
Penang Pork Curry with Potatoes & Peanuts

Time to spice up your life again- or at least your supper, that is! Though most of us know it from the many Thai restaurants that are all around us (or so it seems!), Penang curry is actually Malaysian in origin... and just happens to be one of my favorite Asian curries!

I learned the basics of how to prepare Thai curries from those (thankfully) ready curry pastes, that yes, even the Thai folks themselves use, from a dear old work colleague. Thanks Tuan Jai! I hope you don't mind how I have altered the method to make it my own!


Apart from the coconut milk of course, the other most distinctive flavor of Penang curry is that of the wonderfully aromatic Keffir lime leaves... so divine! I love how this curry is so perfumed, lemony and mild... it had been waaay to long since I had last eaten it! I shall have to make sure to make this again more often in future!


I am so glad that us singletons can get these tiny cans of coconut milk- perfect for a single serving! So- other than that, my other ingredients were, of course the pork- which was a slice of loin, very lean and cut into bite-size strips, against the grain, 5 little potatoes, 1 carrot, 1/2 stick of celery, 1 small red pepper, 1 Spring onion, 1 handful of sugar-snap peas, 1 tablespoon of Penang curry paste, 4-5 Keffir lime leaves (frozen), and some fresh coriander. And a very healthy appetite!


So rich and exotic, and so much easier than you may think... like all of my favorite recipes! This is my kind of food! And possibly, yours too!


A little bit of chopping has to be done of course- the potatoes into bite-sized chunks and the rest in slices, just s you would for a stir-fry.


Begin by frying the pork in a dry, non-stick pan until it begins to give off it's own juices and to brown. One reason for this is that the coconut milk has plenty of fat and I did not want to have any more than necessary in the dish... the other you will see in the next photo...


By the time the pork is brown, you will have a lovely, roasted-in base of flavor to build on for the rest of the dish... so you can now set the pork to one side and continue with the coconut milk...


Add the coconut milk/paste and stir-up all of the good flavor from the pork. Wait until it begins to boil and at a certain point, it will "crack" and as you can see in the photo, separate into a milky and a clear color- that is the fat separating from the water and it signifies the right time to add the curry paste- and those delicious lime leaves!


Now transfer the milk to a saucepan, add the carrot, potato, celery and pepper, the chopped stalks of the coriander and a handful of peanuts and stir together well. Season with Thai fish sauce, top up with water and bring to the boil, then allow to simmer for 10 minutes.


Next, add the pork again and let it come up to temperature for a further 5 minutes...


...and then finally, add the peas, the Spring onion and a little finely chopped coriander. Stir it through gently, pop on the lid, and in the 4-5 minutes it will take you to grab your bowl for serving, your curry will be ready to go!


So full of flavor- and a rich, sweet perfume that will have the neighbors talking- and possibly inviting themselves over!


Maybe not the traditional recipe, but definitely tastier than any I have had at any restaurants here in Germany... In fact, the only better curry I have had here was made by dear old Tuan Jai! Thanks again old girlfriend!

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