Nam prik geng deng (Thai red curry paste)

    40 min

    This recipe tells you the ingredients you need to create a red Thai curry paste from scratch. It makes quite a lot but will keep for a few weeks in the fridge or you can portion it out and freeze in batches. Use this to make basic Thai red curry, or use in stir fries or soups for a boost of Thai flavours.

    2 people made this

    Serves: 36 

    • 2 tablespoons galangal, peeled and chopped
    • 2 stalks lemongrass, sliced
    • 2 tablespoons kaffir lime peel
    • 2 coriander roots, peeled and chopped
    • 1 tablespoon salt
    • 1 tablespoon ground white pepper
    • 6 shallots, chopped
    • 1 head garlic, peeled and chopped
    • 2 tablespoons fermented shrimp paste
    • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds, toasted till brown
    • 2 tablespoons cardamom pods, toasted till brown
    • 60g Thai green chillies, chopped
    • 100g big red chillies, chopped

    Prep:30min  ›  Cook:10min  ›  Ready in:40min 

    1. Pound all the ingredients incorporating them one at a time with a large mortar and pestle until the paste is smooth. Alternatively, use a food processor or blender to puree the ingredients into a paste.
    2. Use 2 to 3 tablespoons of the paste in your curry depending on how spicy you like it.


    Keep in mind that the best flavour comes from pounding it all in a mortar as the food processor oxidises the ingredients creating a muddy flavour. It is well worth the energy of using a mortar and pestle.


    Most of these ingredients can be found in bulk online or in Asian supermarkets.

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