| This recipe is a bit different than most on my site. There are no real tricks to it, and it's not directly "low-carb" in any specific way. However, like any good spice blend or potent ingredient, it packs a lot of punch, for very little effect on blood sugars. A little goes a long way!|
A curry paste is a fresh and vibrant blend of ingredients, most dominantly chilies, spices and herbs. This can form the backbone or a backdrop (depending on the usage) for MANY different recipes. Plop a little into a peanut sauce to give it some more depth of character. Sauté some chicken and eggplant with it, just plain, and you've got a NICE flavorful kick of flavors! Heat up some shrimp in some coconut milk with some lime juice, a little more fish sauce, some fresh cilantro and a blend of tomatoes, peppers, squash and mushrooms for an out of this world shrimp and coconut soup!
Probably the most difficult part of this recipe is finding the ingredients. I'll list substitutions in the ingredient list, where I can. Ultimately, the closer to the true ingredients you get, the more authentic your paste will be. Outside of ingredient procuring, the rest of the process is simply "throw it in a food process and ... process!" I wish I could recommend a mortar and pestle, but I doubt many of you have one of this lying around.
This particular blend is a scaled down and "basic" red paste. There are regional variations that can be explored. My thinking, when developing this recipe, was to keep it simple, while still holding true to a red curry paste. This way, the peripheral ingredients could be added for specific and unique dishes. Some of the common additions to various red pastes are: white peppercorns, cinnamon, fish sauce, mace, nutmeg and cloves. For an even more basic curry paste, you can eliminate the cilantro roots, coriander, cumin and peppercorns.
Storage Tip: This has a lot of fresh ingredients in it, so it's perishable. It's got some acid in it, which helps it to last a little longer, but I wouldn't leave it in the fridge for more than a week. I have mine in series of tiny freezer safe containers ... in the freezer. They hold up well, in there!
Serving Size: Recipe makes about 1 cup of paste. Serving size is roughly 1 tbsp.