Lady Plean Passakornrawong’s historic, first-ever recipe for minced-bird curry with snakehead fish revives the old minced-bird curry syle. The fish is minced and cooked with the curry paste, producing a hearty and comforting thick-textured curry.
Incorrect username or password.
Incorrect username or password.
|More garlic than shallots
|Kaffir lime zest
Add your own recipe notes
You must be a member to use this feature
- 1 snakehead fish (ปลาช่อน) small and fat
- kaffir lime leaves (ใบมะกรูด)
- 1 cup coconut cream (หัวกะทิ)
- 1 1/2 cups coconut milk (หางกะทิ)
- 2 cups Thai basil (ใบโหระพา)
*For the paste:
- 10 dried red long chili (phrik chee fa) (พริกชี้ฟ้าแห้ง) dehydrated
- 1 tablespoon sea salt (เกลือทะเล)
- 2 1/2 tablespoons lemongrass (ตะไคร้) thinly sliced
- 1 1/2 tablespoons galangal (ข่า) thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon coriander roots (รากผักชี) scraped, washed and chopped
- 2 tablespoons Thai garlic (กระเทียมไทย) thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoons shallots (หอมแดง) thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon fermented shrimp paste (kapi)(กะปิย่างไฟ) grilled
- 1 teaspoon white peppercorns (พริกไทย) (S1) roasted and ground
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds (malet phak chee) (เมล็ดผักชี) (S2) roasted and ground
- 1 1/2 Parts fish sauce (น้ำปลา)
- 1/2 Parts palm sugar (น้ำตาลมะพร้าว)
- Clean the snakehead fish and remove its internal organs.
- Using a sharp knife, debone the snakehead fish.
- Mince the meat on a cutting board.
Ruaan (รวน) the fish meat:
- Start by wet-roasting the minced fish with small amount of liquids and hand-torn kaffir lime leaves. This process, known as ruaan, helps remove unwanted odors. Cook the fish until done, then strain and discard the kaffir lime leaves and any cooking liquids. Set aside.
Prepare the curry paste:
- An overview of the curry paste ingredients. (excluding the dry spices).
- Roast and grind the spices, starting with the white peppercorns, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, nutmeg and star anise. The spices are ground separately and kept separate until they are used in the dish.
- De-seed and rehydrate the dried chilies in hot water.
- Pound the curry paste, starting with the chilies and salt.
- Gradually add the other ingredients, from the driest to the wet. Pound the paste until it is smooth with a rounded aroma. After pounding the chilies, add the lemongrass and galangal.
- Add the coriander root.
- Add the shallots and garlic.
- Add the dried spices, and pound to a smooth paste. Start with the ground white peppercorns (S1).
- Add the roasted and ground coriander seeds.
- Add the fermented shrimp paste (kapi) and continue pounding until a rounded aroma is achieved.
- Remove the curry paste and set it aside. Wash the mortar and pestle with about one cup of plain water and reserve the liquids.
Cook the curry:
- In a brass wok, heat the coconut cream until it thickens and oil appears. Scoop out a small portion to drizzle on top of the finished curry.
- Add the curry paste.
- Add the minced fish meat and mix well.
Cooking the curry:
- Dilute the curry with coconut milk or chicken stock to your liking. Cover and cook until the fish oil rises to the surface.
- Season to a salty leading with a sweet floor flavor profile – and taste before seasoning! Start by seasoning the salty element using fish sauce.
- When you are satisfied with the saltiness, add palm sugar at the ratio indicated.
Adding the herbs:
- Add the young chilies.
- Turn off the heat before adding the Thai basil. Spread the Thai basil equally on top of the curry and gently push it into the broth, allowing it to wilt down. Do not stir vigorously!
Pork and Three Beans Minced-Bird Style Curry with Fingerroot and Holy Basil (แกงคั่วหมูสับถั่วพู; Gaaeng Muu Sap Thuaa Phuu)
This contemporary minced-bird style curry uses pork rather than bird. However, since thicker, meatier curries have become associated in modern Thai cuisine with the bold presence of fingerroot – for example, in dishes such as fermented rice noodles in naam yaa thick fish curry (khanohm jeen naam yaa (ขนมจีนน้ำยา)) – this dish adopts the penetrating aromatic character of fingerroot along with the clove-like warmth of holy basil.
Like crisp footsteps in a forest, this satisfyingly meaty curry features vibrant fresh red chilies and thinly sliced yardlong beans and winged beans. It is suitable to serve with rice or with fermented rice noodles (khanom jeen paeng mak), conveying an aromatic upcountry flair.
Rice Seasoned with Young Tamarind Relish, Sweetened Fish and Pickled Morning Glory (ข้าวคลุกน้ำพริกมะขามอ่อน ผักบุ้งดอง ปลาแห้งผัดหวาน และ ปลาดุกย่าง; Khaao Khlook Naam Phrik Makhaam Aawn Phakboong Daawng Bplaa Haaeng Phat Waan Lae Bplaa Dook Yaang)
Seasoned rice dishes have been a staple of rice-consuming societies almost since the first grains were cultivated. Adapted according to local resources, traditions and individual preferences, seasoned rice dishes are relished and savored across all walks of life. Within Siamese society, these dishes offer insight into the flavor instincts and eating habits across all demographics, revealing which food items were locally available and valued.
In this delicious seasoned rice recipe from the kitchens of the daughter of King Chulalongkorn, Princess Yaovabha Bongsanid (พระเจ้าบรมวงศ์เธอ พระองค์เจ้าเยาวภาพงศ์สนิท) (1884-1934), the Princess uses a variety of common preserved and inexpensive ingredients, clearly drawing inspiration from the cuisine of the Central Plains with nods to the rural and coastal living atmosphere.
c1941 Old-Fashioned spicy curry of chicken with young chilies (แกงเผ็ดแบบโบราณอย่างคุณถนอม ปาลบุตร พ.ศ. 2484 ; gaaeng phet baaep bo:h raan)
This is a classical Siamese spicy curry that displays a spicy, salty and sweet flavor profile, and uses common curry ingredients such as pea eggplants and young green chilies with an interesting dry spice profile.
Khanohm Jeen Naam Yaa (ขนมจีนน้ำยา) – Fermented Rice Noodles with Minced Fish in Aromatic Coconut Curry
In the Central Plains of the Kingdom, fermented rice noodles are inextricably linked to a dish known as naam yaa. Composed of a dense, coconut-based minced fish curry, the dish is infused with layers of salted fish and possesses the distinctive, invigorating and purifying notes of fingerroot. Typically, naam yaa is served with fresh lemon basil as the herb of choice along with an array of side dishes collectively known as meuuat khanohm jeen (เหมือดขนมจีน). These include blanched bean sprouts seasoned with a touch of turmeric for color, fresh lemon basil leaves, thinly sliced three colored chilies, and ground chili for added heat. More elaborate versions will add blanched Chinese bitter gourd slices, batter-fried young morning glory shoots, and fresh shrimp minced and fried with its tomalley in pork lard, as well as crispy-fried shallots as the finishing touch.
c1933 An Auspicious fish ball curry with two basils (แกงเผ็ดปลาเล็กปลาน้อย; gaaeng phet bplaa lek bplaa naawy)
Typically, in Central-style curries, different types of basil are not used together. In higher cuisine, it is an unstated – but understood – practice to avoid blending the definitive scents of various basils. A curry’s final herbal identity is intended to remain definitively with its basil: the citrus notes of holy basil; the spicy-woody and pungent flavor of tree basil; the tart fragrance of lemon basil; or the cooling anise sensation of Thai basil.