Making your own Thai green curry paste from scratch is so worth it. If you have a blender it is very easy and the hardest part could be sourcing the ingredients. Fresh curry paste has more depth of flavor and is more fragrant than store-bought curry paste. And you can make it less spicy if you want by reducing the amount of chillies. Cooking the beef sous-vide ensures that the beef will be very tender and juicy. I love to include eggplant with curry, as it does such a good job of absorbing the curry flavor. Sweet Thai basil is what completes this dish. The flavor and texture of this dish are amazing.
For 2 servings
300 grams (.66 lb) stewing beef, I like flank steak because of the texture
600 grams (1.33 lb) eggplant, quartered lengthwise and then sliced thickly
1/2 can of coconut milk
Thai fish sauce, to taste
freshly squeezed lime juice, to taste
sugar, to taste
Thai basil, for garnish
2 Tbsp coconut oil
For the Thai green curry paste
2 fresh green chillies (or more or less depending on your preference)
4 cloves garlic, sliced
2 lemon grass, sliced
1 large shallot, sliced
1 tsp minced cilantro root, or cilantro stems
1 Tbsp sliced galangal (laos)
1 tsp Thai shrimp paste
1/2 tsp ground coriander seed
1/2 tsp ground cumin seed
1/4 tsp freshly ground white pepper
1/2 tsp salt
grated zest of 1 kaffir lime
Prepare the ingredients for the curry paste.
Put the ingredients for the curry paste in a blender.
Spoon off the thick coconut cream that floats on top of the coconut milk, and reserve.
Add some of the thin coconut milk to the blender with the curry paste ingredients (as much as needed to make it blend).
Blend until smooth.
Heat coconut oil in a frying pan over high heat. Brown the beef on both sides over high heat. The beef should stay raw inside, this is just to get some nice browning flavor.
Set the beef aside to cool.
Add 2 tablespoons of the reserved coconut cream to the same pan without cleaning it. Cook over high heat, stirring, until the oil ‘breaks’.
Add the curry paste.
Cook over medium-high heat, until the curry paste is fragrant.
Take half of the cooked curry paste and allow to cool. Vacuum seal the beef with that curry paste. (You could also dice the beef first.)
Cook the beef sous-vide for 24 hours at 74C/165F.
Add the eggplant to the remaining curry paste.
Stir over medium-high heat until the eggplant is coated with the curry paste.
Add some more coconut milk.
Cover and cook, stirring regularly, until the eggplant is cooked through.
Reserve the cooked eggplant until the next day when the beef is ready.
(Alternatively, you could also reserve the cooked curry paste until the next day and cook the eggplant right before serving.)
When the beef is done, add the juices from the sous vide bag to the eggplant. Stir and bring to a boil, then turn off the heat.
Dice the beef, if you did not already do that before cooking sous-vide.
Season the curry to taste with freshly squeezed lime juice…
…fish sauce, and sugar. Make sure to taste before adding anything, because the fish sauce already contains both salt and sugar.
Add the cubed beef, and stir to incorporate. Allow the beef to warm through, but do not allow the curry to boil again as you don’t want the meat to dry out.
Add Thai basil and stir to mix.
Serve with white rice and garnish with more Thai basil.
Today’s flashback is very appropriate, as it is saté udang: shrimp skewers from Indonesia.