Northern Style Hang Lay Curry (gaaeng hang laeh muu ; แกงฮังเลหมู)

Click to listen to the Thai name pronunciation Listen to the Thai name pronunciation
By: Hanuman

This recipe comes all the way from India through the northern Burmese border. The masala spice mix is still sold in small packages with retro looking prints that seem to forever exist.

There is no way in a recipe to communicate what’s going on in here; a thick red chili paste marinate, that bursts in orange turmeric color, provides the perfect seen to the tender, almost falling apart, pork meat.

If you like curries with the thickness and complexity of the Massaman Curry, you will enjoy this salty, sweet and sour dish.

Northern Style Hang Lay Curry <br>(gaaeng hang laeh muu ; แกงฮังเลหมู)
This recipe comes all the way from India through the northern Burmese border. The masala spice mix is still sold in small packages with retro looking prints that seem to forever exist.
Prep Time 1 hr 30 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 30 mins
Total Time 3 hrs
Course Main
Cuisine Thai
Servings 6


  • 500 gr pork shoulder or collar, cut into 3cm (1.5″) cubes
  • 500 gr pork belly sliced bacon, cut into 3cm (1.5″) cubes
  • 1/2 cup fresh pineapple roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon thick dark soy sauce
  • 25 small shallots peeled and cut into halves
  • 3 cups ginger peeled and cut into julienne
  • 4 whole pickled garlic
  • 1 cup pickled garlic brine
  • 1/2 cup freshly roasted peanuts
  • 1 teaspoon hang lay masala spice mix or curry powder
  • 3 tablespoon tamarind paste
  • 4 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoon palm sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoon neutral flavor oil for frying

Hang Lay Curry Paste Ingredients

  • 8-10 dried red long chili (phrik chee fa) (พริกชี้ฟ้าแห้ง)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 lemongrass about 5 tablespoon , finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon galangal finely chopped
  • 2/3 cup shallots finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh turmeric finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon gabpi fermented shrimp paste
  • 1 teaspoon hang lay masala spice mix or curry powder


Prepare the curry paste

  • Clean, peel, chop and prepare all the ingredients for the curry paste.
  • Soak the chilies in water until soft.
  • In a mortar and pestle, start pounding the chilies with salt as an abrasive.

  • Add lemongrass and pound it finely.
  • Add galangal and pound it finely.
  • Add shallots, garlic and fresh turmeric, and pound everything to a fine paste.

  • Add hang lay masala spice mix.
  • Add gabpi and mix well. Set aside.

Prepare the curry

  • In a mixing bowl mix the two kinds of pork cuts cubes with the pineapple and all the amount of curry paste.
  • Add thick dark soy sauce and mix well.
  • Let the pork mixture to marinate for at least 1 hour.
  • Heat oil in a pan.
  • Fry the pork mixture on low heat until the fat renders out.

  • Add shallots and ginger and mix well.

  • Add pickled garlic and its brine.

  • Add roasted peanuts.
  • Add hang lay masala spice mix.
  • Mix everything well together
  • Season with tamarind paste, fish sauce and palm sugar.

  • Add water to cover.
  • Simmer on low heat for about 1 hour until pork is soft and sauce is thick.
  • Serve.
Tried this recipe?We'd love to see it - tag it #THAIFOODMASTER on Instagram! Please leave a comment to let us know how it was!


26 comments… add one
  • Avatar Toon Jun 6, 2010, 2:38 pm

    ไม่อยากบอกเลยค่ะ อายตัวเองมากเพราะไม่เคยรู้มาก่อนว่ามีผงแกงฮังเลแบบนี้ด้วย
    ต้องขอคารวะคุณหนุมาน รู้เรื่องมากกว่าคนไทยอย่างดิฉันอีก….อายจัง

  • Avatar khan-kluay Jun 6, 2010, 10:35 pm

    wow น่าทานจริงๆ

  • Avatar ning Jun 7, 2010, 11:37 pm

    น่ากินค่ะ เก่งมากๆ

  • Avatar Oswulf Jun 8, 2010, 3:52 pm

    This recipe seems a little odd to me. It has the usual ingredients of this curry – the pickled garlic, peanuts and dried spices. However, I’ve never encountered it with pineapple in before (and it’s one of my favorite curries, so I eat it quite often), and the addition of raw spices without their being fried seems odd. I was therefore wondering what the source of the recipe was? How authentic do you think it is?

    • Avatar Hanuman Jun 8, 2010, 10:54 pm

      Hi Oswulf, The recipe is correct. Note that the this type of curry varies from province to province, from village to village and even between families. everyone has their own take on it. Some will not add peanuts and some will even leave out the ginger. it is really a matter of personal preferences… The pineapple is the less common ingredient in this version. pineapple contain enzymes that helps to tender the meat, it does not last the stewing and you wont notice it in the final dish. try it please and let me know how did you liked it. cheers

  • Avatar Nuch jung Jun 8, 2010, 9:24 pm

    ถ้าไม่ทาน หมู เปลี่ยนเป็นกุ้ง (ของโปรด) ได้ไม๊คะ

    Take care ka…^O^

    • Avatar Hanuman Jun 8, 2010, 10:56 pm

      ผมไม่เคยลองทำแกงฮังเลกุ้ง แต่เคยเจอฮังเลที่ใช้ปลาทำ เป็นอาหารของชาวมอญ

  • Avatar ramita Jun 9, 2010, 4:03 pm

    Nice., i really like north foods and You have the ability.
    cheers. ^^

  • Avatar justflower Jul 24, 2010, 12:58 pm

    I knew your website from watching TV show on Channel 9 a couple month ago. This time checked your website again, and found out that you have a recipe for Hang Lay Curry. It seems that you have a nice job for having this recipe. However, to reserve anthentic food and recipe I would prefer not having peanuts in the curry.
    Thank you very much for your contribution.

    • Avatar Hanuman Jul 24, 2010, 1:30 pm

      Thank you for stopping by. There are many versions of Geng Hang Lay, I have seen it both ways…. some as you describe are not adding peanuts and some do. Its a matter of personal preferences. cheers, hanuman

  • Avatar Justflower Jul 25, 2010, 10:33 am

    Sawasdee Khun Hanuman
    I hope you wouldn’t mind if I like to continue the last comment. I asked people on the street since I live in the Northern of Thailand. Some say they add peanuts in the Hang Lay curry, but some don’t, just like you already mentioned. For those who don’t add peanuts mentioned that it’s not Mussamun curry. The interesting thing is others add santol (กระท้อน) in the Hang Lay curry, instead of adding peanuts. Today, we will cook the curry with santol. It may be my first time to have that. You may like it too.

    • Avatar Hanuman Jul 25, 2010, 1:06 pm

      Thanks for the info. I heard before about adding grathaawn but never tasted it in a geng hanglay. please let me know how did the dish come up!

  • Avatar newchef Jan 9, 2011, 10:09 am


  • Avatar panmai Feb 3, 2012, 1:58 pm

    กำลังเตรียม เครื่องปรุงและส่วนผสมจะทำ แกงฮังเลสูตรคุณหนุมาน แต่อ่านส่วนผสมแล้ว ขิงซอย 3 ถ้วยเลยหรือค่ะ รู้สึกว่ามันเยอะมาก เดี๋ยวทำเสร็จแล้วจะเอาการบ้านมาส่งน่ะค่ะ

  • Avatar michael May 8, 2012, 1:38 pm

    very interesting curry. but the amount of ginger is unusual to say the least, is this an error?

    • Avatar Hanuman May 8, 2012, 11:32 pm

      No Michael, It is not an error ;-) Try it and let me know how it came out.

  • Avatar michael May 9, 2012, 12:20 pm

    Thanks for the response. I have travelled extensively all over Asia and love Asian food, but I have never seen 3 cups of ginger to just 1Kg of meat before. I shall definitely try this and compare to other recipes I have tried, that only says 1/4 to 1/2 cup. You are either a ginger lunatic or an absolute genius. I can’t wait to find out.

  • Avatar michael May 16, 2012, 12:19 pm

    Well, I tried the recipe with the 3 cups of ginger and it was as I thought it would be, too much ginger for my taste. Although it was not as overpowering as I thought it would be. It did however overpower the other flavours so I will cut back considerably next time. Apart from that a very good recipe. I would like to comment in general as I notice you only provide a video for the method but no quantities for allot of the recipes. I f you could provide at least an ingredient list with quantities to go with the video that would be much appreciated.
    Thanks for the website, keep up the good work.

    • Avatar Hanuman May 25, 2012, 8:42 am

      hey michael thanks for the feedback, in recent posts i am also giving measurements by weight, that should communicate better. as far as the videos, they were made in 2008, i should revisit that area as soon as time allows me. cheers, hanuman

  • Avatar Kamonrat Borowsky Sep 27, 2012, 4:40 am

    วันนี้ดิฉันลองทำแกงฮังเลตามสูตรที่คุณทำเพราะดูน่ากินมากค่ะ แต่ดิฉันไม่เคยกินแกงชนิดนี้มาก่อนเลยไม่แน่ใจว่ารสชาดแบบต้นตำรับมันเป็นยังไงค่ะ ต้องเค็มนำ ต้องออกหวาน หรือเปรี้ยว คุณหนุมานช่วยแนะนำด้วยนะคะ ขอบคุณล่วงหน้าค่ะ

  • Avatar Dianne Mar 9, 2016, 9:37 am

    Hello from Australia and thank you for having this area to ask questions. My husband and I were in the north of Thailand in Chiang Mai about 11 years ago and visited the Cultural Centre to watch all the different dancing and taste authentic Thai food. I’ve been trying to find a recipe for the pork dish which was probably the best flavour I’ve tasted ever! In a Thai Restaurant recently I was talking to the owner who is from Chiang Mai and discribed the look and taste. She said it had to be Kaeng Hung Leh Moo. It was a pork dish, quite dry and a deep reddish brown colour. It wasn’t hot to the taste but so rich and the large pieces of pork were extremely tender. Is your recipe and my description the same dish. I remember it looking drier than your photograph. Love to hear from you. Wish we could jump on a plane and go back. Loved the north of Thailand soooo much. Thank you Dianne.

    • Avatar Hanuman Mar 10, 2016, 7:16 am

      Hello Dianne, Sounds like it. This is the recipe for HangLay curry. Give it a try !

  • Avatar Al Dec 4, 2019, 12:41 am

    I have eaten this many times in northern Thailand and there are almost always some beans in this curry.

    • Avatar Hanuman Dec 6, 2019, 6:34 pm

      not so, some do, not always

  • Avatar Rev Apr 18, 2020, 10:42 am

    Do you have a recipe for how to make the hang lay masala spice mix?

    • Avatar Hanuman Apr 19, 2020, 6:56 am

      yes i do, but i give it only to my students. sorry

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