Yellow Thai Curry

Despite how hot it’s been, I’ve been craving some spicy Thai style curry the last couple of days and figured it was time to do something about that. I was also looking for a great way to use up some basil, limes and shallots that were in the house.

What I love about yellow curry is that it is a Thai interpretation of one of my other favorite dishes – Indian curry. Traditionally thicker than other Thai curries and using more dried spices in the curry paste (versus more fresh herbs in red and green pastes), yellow curry is sweet and spicy and takes its color from turmeric. To save time, I used a store bought curry paste, but there are hundreds of recipes out there for making your own.

The key to this recipe is to wait a moment after adding the curry paste before adding the coconut milk. In doing so, the curry (and your kitchen) become much more fragrant and toasty. Rice is a must for serving and topping your curry with some basil and a squeeze of lime will both brighten up and cool down your dinner.

Yellow Thai Curry

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into 1″ pieces
  • 2 tbsp cooking sherry
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
  • 6 oz yellow curry paste
  • 15 oz coconut milk, well stirred
  • 1″ piece ginger
  • zest from one lime, the cut lime into wedges for garnish
  • 8 oz white mushrooms, quartered
  • 8 oz snow peas, trimmed
  • 1 cup jasmine rice, prepared to package directions
  • fresh basil leaves, for garnish

In a large soup pot or Dutch oven, heat the oil until it is smoking hot. Toss in the shallots and season with plenty of salt and pepper, stirring occasionally. When the shallots have softened – about 5 minutes – add in the chicken, stirring occasionally until it’s cooked through.

Deglaze the pan with the cooking sherry and add in the peppers. Cook the peppers until they become soft, adding more salt and pepper as needed. Add the curry paste and stir it in, coating all of the vegetables and chicken.

Add half of the coconut milk, the ginger, and the lime zest. Bring everything up to a low boil and allow the liquid to reduce by about half. Add the remaining coconut milk and again, bring it up to a boil. Toss in the mushrooms and peas and make sure everything is well mixed. Allow the curry to thicken to your liking and then serve over rice with fresh basil and lime wedges.

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